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Tomás Ó Sé Has Stood Up For The Plight Of The Club GAA Player

Tomás Ó Sé Has Stood Up For The Plight Of The Club GAA Player

Tomás Ó Sé made an appearance on Newstalk's Off the Ball on Tuesday night and, along with picking Kerry to win the All-Ireland, spoke about the situation which many club GAA players find themselves in at this time of the year.

When I was playing inter-county it's something that you don't actually realise. Jesus, the club player gets a kind of a raw deal when you think about it.

A teacher in Fermoy, Ó Sé currently plays for Nemo Rangers after transferring from An Gaeltacht.

Initially expecting to play B football, the five-time All-Ireland winner was selected for the senior Championship last month.

What he finds absurd is that the next game might not be until August.

They picked me for the first round of the Championship but the first round was in mid-May or early May and depending on how Cork do in the Championship - this is what I think is ridiculous, in terms of the fixture delay that we have - the next round could be August.

When I was an inter-county player, I'd look at club players at home going to America for the summer and I'd be giving out - 'how dare you leave the club down?' - but there's no games on for them. What else could they do? It's hard to blame them.

He agreed with presenter Joe Molloy that club players are treated terribly and questioned how managers were expected to properly prepare their teams for action.

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The club player is a sucker really when you think about it because the managers don't know when the game is. If Cork win, the game will be a certain date and if Cork lose the game will be another date.

When do you peak your team or when do you try to get your team up for it?

I think it's the one area where the GAA could be doing something more and just stop talking about it. Just get it done.

A brief outline of what he saw as an 'ideal situation' for club and inter-county football was offered.

The club player, they train all year round, the county player comes in when the inter-county team is on a break or after a round of the Championship.

I'd love to see if there was just a window or block where the club was looked after. Then a block where the inter-county is just completely inter-county. I don't know if it would be possible to have that but it would be the ideal situation.

Continuing, he spoke about the complexity of the club scene in Cork and the illogical situation which sees a minimal amount of club GAA played in the summer months.

Look at a huge county like Cork. Look at the junior clubs and intermediate clubs and senior clubs and then you've got the hurling. A dual player could mess up a fixture for two or three weeks. That's just the way it is. I can't understand how it works down here to be honest with you.

At home it's different because there's a pocket of hurling and it's different but here it's everywhere and there's a pile of dual clubs and dual players. It's amazing how they work it.

No club player wants to be player County Championships in November. It's wrong that they're playing in heavy muddy fields. The fields are empty right now and you've got great weather and you've got no County Championship games on.

If they could do something about it then it'd be great but I understand it's a hard one to get right.

You can listen to the full interview with Ó Sé below.

Picture credit: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

PJ Browne
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