GAA

Counties Deserve Better Than Patronising Response To The GAA Funding Debate

Counties Deserve Better Than Patronising Response To The GAA Funding Debate

On Sunday, one of the greatest teams the sport of Gaelic football has known strolled to their ninth Leinster title in a row thanks to a 1-17 to 0-4 victory over Meath in Croke Park. It was awesome, a superb showing by a Dublin side on the march towards a remarkable five All-Ireland titles.

Separately, a well-aired debate resumed on Sunday in relation to the inequality of GAA funding. It's a conversation that has occurred before and will happen again, but one aspect of it all proved particularly problematic.

On this week's Three Man Weave, the Balls.ie GAA podcast, the lads discussed the patronising response to less-well-off counties and their concerns.

'Get better volunteers.'

'Work harder.'

'Sacrifice more.'

Overly simplistic and incredibly condescending.

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Full discussion: 20.17

Maurice: The first step of anything is understanding the situation. You have to understand, even if you don’t agree, the concerns and context for everyone else.

So you've RTE airing a package on the GAA funding and Marty Morrissey asks the Dublin county board about the fairness of it. This is how he phrases the question: "Do you get annoyed when there is criticism of how much money Dublin get? Is it begrudgery? Is your reaction to say 'well lads, ye get your house in order. We've done it.'"

The national broadcaster. You don't have to agree with the large portions of the GAA community concerned about the inequality but it's your job to reflect that. At the very least, understand where they are coming from. Don't patronise people with a softball question which you half-answer for him. We'd Sean Duffy, the Fermanagh hurling coach, on this podcast crying out for a games development officer. Is your response to him 'get your own house in order?' Come on.

You'd a former Dublin analyst tweeting then deleting a statement claiming they're more successful simply because 'the players sacrifice more and work harder than any other'. That sentiment is out there and it's totally unfair.

It doesn't matter if you are a fan, a journalist, a backroom team member or whatever. Can you not understand there are people in a considerably worse situation with genuine concerns, even if you don't agree? The fact that they're dismissed as 'begrudgery' is so lazy.

Mick: "There can be two things at once. This Dublin team's success is to do with Jim Gavin, a high talent level, the fact that they are the best football team of all time. There's also another thing which is the money.

"This has nothing to do with the conversation about the Dublin football team but we need to have this other conversation, stop moving the goalposts."

Mark: I remember Jim McGuinness saying four or five years ago that 'you could give some counties all the money in the world and they would still make a balls of it.' How you use it is important but it's another discussion. We can't even get to that point if we don't acknowledge the initial issue.

To listen to the full podcast, search 'Balls.ie' on Spotify, Pocketcast, Apple podcasts or any other podcast platform or click here. 

Maurice Brosnan

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