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Messages - thewobbler

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Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 30, 2021, 10:39:06 AM »
I think you are mistaking stature for structure. Just because a club wins a competition doesn't automatically give them a larger selection of players.

Ballyholland has the biggest pick of players outside of Carryduff and Bredagh and East Belfast.

You’re confused. Upwards on 70% of players at all grades come from the one small rural primary school.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 29, 2021, 02:39:15 PM »
This obviously the wrong time for an U-20s competition; so many players will be away at 3rd level. There is rarely a good time, I suppose

It’s always been a fraught competition; the domain of larger clubs whose numbers allow them to counteract the normal reasons why teenagers drop out of football: just lost interest, new hobbies or distractions, away to university.

I’d guess a number of clubs were like ourselves this year, hopeful that the surges in training numbers for senior football during Covid, would reflect in greater interest and desire among u20s. It was always hopeful.


U20 football, u19 football and reserve football should all be thrown out and replaced with a “future stars” league, which runs on a regional basis during the season, before full county knockout stages / championship in late summer. The regionality is key: keep the games local, cut down on travelling.

 In reality, with no blocks in place on age limits, this would be reserve football under a different name.  But in reality something needs to change to make reserve football a more attractive proposition to teenagers.

I played reserves at 15. So did everyone. Why on earth modern 18 year olds need another juvenile rung, I don’t know.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 24, 2021, 11:28:06 AM »
Internal committee wranglings holding the Byransford appointments up. The dinosaurs don't want to pony up for a big name but the younger people and players feel they need to speculate to accumulate. A former championship winner informed me that its been going on for years and is holding the club back

More dinosaurs on the loose. It seems they’re everywhere. These f**kers with their prudence, processes and safeguards are ruining everyone’s fun.

General discussion / Re: Premier League 2021-22
« on: November 21, 2021, 04:03:44 PM »
The key for Everton, WHU and whoever else is the chasing pack, is not to squander the budget on top 6 cast offs e.g. more Souceks, fewer Iwobis.

The key for Spurs, Liverpool and Arsenal not to squander their big investments in the players with the wrong mentality / lack of drive to succeed e.g more Manes, fewer NDombeles.

The key for meagwealthy City, Chelsea and United is to maintain a balanced squad so that when they inevitably sack a manager, their successor isn’t left with no choice but to play underperforming players / players in the wrong position.

United have been making a mess of this for years. Look at their bench yesterday. Over a million pound and a half a week in wages out the door, and not one of them fit to challenge for starting position.

General discussion / Re: Premier League 2021-22
« on: November 19, 2021, 12:34:40 PM »
In summary: the world’s most popular sport has a sprinkling of wrong ‘uns among its tens of thousands of professional players, and a tendency towards greed and backhanders among some of its senior administrators.

It’s about as groundbreaking as a light entertainment show on BBC NI.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 17, 2021, 10:43:32 AM »
Pete McGrath wee James and Aidan o Rourke new down management. To be confirmed

That would not be a bad setup, it would be something at that stage, We need something in place this week

Whether you like it not, whether he deserves it (he clearly doesn’t) or not, really does not matter…. the bottom line truth is that it’s been so long since players responded appropriately to Pete McGrath’s management, that his name should just be moved to the side.

GAA Discussion / Re: Amateurism
« on: November 15, 2021, 02:58:21 PM »
GAA vs soccer/football in Ireland tends to be a class thing. I think that might influence infrastructural differences.

A class thing?

General discussion / Re: The IRISH RUGBY thread
« on: November 13, 2021, 05:52:50 PM »
That was class.

Rugby ain’t totally fucked just yet.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 12, 2021, 11:51:31 AM »
I’m in no way trying to diminish the role of management here, but hear me out.

Describing Laverty and Clarke as having a clear “brand of football” based on watching one u20 campaign is quite far fetched. They picked up a team loaded with ball-carrying pace, and to play anything other than ball-carrying football would have been truly daft. Both men are too clever (from what I can gauge) to take the same approach again for 2022, unless the players fit that approach.

And would they further replicate it in senior football? I’d say not a chance. U20 is closer to u17 football in terms of physicality and presence, than it is to senior.

How would Deegan have done with that group? Who knows? The feedback from his tenure certainly wasn’t great. But anytime the luck of the draw throws up a path to a championship that consists of Cavan, Fermanagh, Monaghan, I’d be hopeful that a Down team with no management at all could go close. This is no disrespect to those counties (especially Monaghan). But not having to play either Donegal or Tyrone is a rare and gleeful opportunity.

As for would the minor team of 3 years ago not been among the favourites? Again, who knows? Without the benefit of a further year to allow for late bloomers, and a year less of MacRory to analyse, the U17 is even more difficult to assess than minor was.


Not trying to piss on anyone’s parades about Clarke and Laverty. But in underage ranks, anyone who really believes that a manager is more important than the crop of players available, needs their heads looked at.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 12, 2021, 10:12:29 AM »
Would there not be a decent percentage of last years under 20's still around ?

Most of that good Burren underage team should all be around the 19 mark by then too.  I know they didn't do themselves justice at minor level but there should be the basis of a decent side there.

That’s kind of my point WGM, there seems to be an assumption that a lot of the squad is returning. Which might be true. But there won’t be a lot of starters returning.

Off the top of my head (and this me trying to remember minor teams from 3 years ago) from those who featured last year I think Odhran Murdock, Paddy McCarthy, one of the Magills, John McGovern, are back. Maybe Sean Og McCusker too. And I’d expect that Murdock will be drafted into senior Down set up ASAP.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 12, 2021, 08:39:28 AM »
Laverty and Clarke to be announced soon

I think both are terrific but to take that team away from the under 20s is very short sighted

We are trying to fix things from the top instead of fixing them from the bottom up

Get the foundations right

Last seasons 20s was a small stop in the right direction

If you want to fix things from the bottom up then you don’t start with u20s.

Again, why is GAAboard so convinced that this year’s crop of u20s can emulate last year’s?

GAA Discussion / Re: Amateurism
« on: November 11, 2021, 03:49:35 PM »
lots of players giving cushy jobs or push up the ladder because they play gaa expecially county players you could say its indirectly professional how many intercounty players are unemployed  how many club players are unemployed.
You could also acknowledge that men who are disciplined and focused enough to excel in a sport might just have enough focus and discipline to have a career too.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 10, 2021, 10:42:44 PM »
Laverty and Clarke are mad to touch that job. They would serve the county better by staying with the u20s for another year or 2 and then raking the step up.
I have to agree with this....

Why is there a general consensus that this year’s u20s can emulate / kick on from last year. Surely it’ll be a very different team?

GAA Discussion / Re: Amateurism
« on: November 08, 2021, 09:21:40 PM »
It’s very simple. At the higher levels of soccer in Ireland (throughout the 32) up to 90% of income from gate or sponsor/benefactor goes on chasing a piped dream via payment to players. It stands to reason then that facilitates will deteriorate with zero investment.
Compare that to the GAA model, whereby there is only really an outside management fee to cover for some clubs and factor in the love of place that the GAA is built around. A smallish club might raise 100k in a raffle or corporate dinner; soccer just does not have that culture of volunteerism, where members will walk the highways and byways knocking doors and selling tickets. Add in members providing professional services for free or below cost combined with a professional approach to seeking and obtaining grants and you can see how facilities in Gaa are built.
Local sponsorship is also more freely available as the sponsor can see on the ground, the work and investment going on for minimal personal return for the members.
For me though, the greatest single factor contributing to the quality of Gaa facilities at present is tribal jealousy.
As Patrick Kavanagh once famously said, ‘why is it, that all the greatest bastards in the world, are born in the next parish’😂
If then hoots are building a covered 4g with underfloor heating then be god, ours will be 5G

Patronising bullshit. No culture of volunteerism in soccer?

65% of revenue can go on wages. Thats there years and thats 20 clubs out of 6,000 in the 26.

Some GAA clubs are superb with top facilities. Same with soccer. Some are shite. Same with soccer. Some are well run. Some are a shambles.

There are two differences. One. Many multiples of soccer clubs than GAA ones. They need to share facilities or even merge. Two. The GAA got 100% of all sports grants until about 20 years ago. There was a tax on rugby and soccer tickets ringfenced for the GAA until the 60's. It's a blind spot for too many to appreciate just how much more help the GAA got from successive governments.

Or put another way. What Presidential candidate could soccer clubs bung 5k to to guarantee their grant was accepted? The playing field is not level, never has been.

They have their problems, but volunteerism isn't one of them.

The quality and frequency of GAA facilities in the six counties really should help you understand that no matter how much you want to believe something, you aren’t entitled to your own “facts”.

Down / Re: Down Club Hurling & Football
« on: November 07, 2021, 09:44:32 PM »
Given the amount of referees they apparently control, Kilcoo must average 6-7 in house games a week.

Congrats to the Magpies.

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