Mixed reaction to starred games
THE introduction of mid-week league fixtures, and a number of ‘starred fixtures’ where clubs would play league games without their county players, has met with a mixed reaction from club managers in the top flight of Fermanagh football.
After a hiatus in the middle of last summer, when some clubs went two months without playing any senior football, the problem of club activity continuing into the winter months was discussed at length.
The county board solution was to announce that a number of mid-week rounds of fixtures would take place, and the concept of the ‘starred game’ would be re-introduced.
While these actions will certainly help conclude the league programme in good time, the feeling among some is that even though the county team were knocked out of the Ulster Championship and qualifiers in the first round of both, there was a gap in the leagues that disrupted their sides.
Their feelings were made known in a two-part series of interviews that appeared in The Fermanagh Herald.
“A long break last season didn’t do us any good and it’s very hard to keep players motivated during a lengthy break,” commented St Joseph’s manager Iggy Gallagher. “I would buy into midweek fixtures and starred games as long as there was common sense applied in arranging the fixtures. It is important to keep the thing moving.”
Roslea coach Peter McGinnity was broadly in favour of both measures.
“I would class these as a necessary evil. Clubs can’t have it both ways in complaining about periods with no games and then objecting to solutions tackling this. There could be more difficulty with midweek fixtures in that clubs may have players who are working out of the country.”
The full story is in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published Thursday April 12. Buy your copy now in your local newsagent, or online by clicking the subscribe button on this page