At present, guidelines exist preventing counties from training and playing during prescribed periods at various levels, but the Cats’ 6-34 to 0-2 loss to Louth in the Leinster U21 Football Championship on Wednesday, and the absence of 11 panel members, has raised questions as to whether they should be given more time to prepare.
“It was a comment that I made that perhaps a dispensation could be reached for the likes of Kilkenny,” Skelly says.
“It was made with them in mind, that they might be given extra time to prepare and get a squad together so that they might be in a position to compete when the U21 starts.
“It can be difficult to bring a squad together and try to develop loyalty, and all I’m saying is that a dispensation is something that could be used, not something that will happen for definite, as I don’t have that power.”
An improvement across the board is what Skelly identifies as the main aim with regard to Kilkenny football.
Meanwhile, Kerry manager Jack O’Connor has re-jigged his defence for Sunday’s trip to Down in the Allianz Football League Division 1.
Following a 2-8 to 0-10 reverse at home to Armagh last time out, the Kingdom make two personnel changes and four positional switches at the back. Marc Ó Sé, full-back against the Orchard County, reverts to his more familiar number two, while Daniel Bohan comes in at three with Killian Young moving from centre-back to left corner-back as Shane Enright loses out.
The modified half-back line sees Aidan O’Mahony move to centre-back from the left wing with Brian Maguire taking his place having been right corner-back previously. In addition, Peter Crowley comes in at right half-back for the suspended Tomás Ó Sé. Further up, Declan O’Sullivan and Patrick Curtin take the places of Seán O’Sullivan and Barry John Keane respectively.
Cork have made five changes for their game against Donegal in Balybofey. Ken O’Halloran comes in for Alan Quirke in goal, Eoin O’Mahony and Eoin Cotter replace Michael Shields (suspended) and Eoin Cadogan (injured) in defence, while in attack Paul Kerrigan and Colm O’Neill both start, with Fiachra Lynch and Pearse O’Neill losing out — Fintan Goold moving to midfield instead of the latter.
In Division 2, Westmeath have named John Heslin at midfield for their home tie with Galway. Joe Bergin and Conor Doherty make their first starts of the year for the Tribesmen, though Pádraic Joyce remains absent.
Tyrone make five changes as they travel to Drogheda to meet Louth, though they must do without the injured Stephen O’Neill and Aidan Cassidy, while Seán Cavanagh is once again named among the substitutes as he battles a shoulder injury.
Elsewhere, the Tipperary team for Sunday's Waterford Crystal Cup final against Clare shows five changes from the side that started against Kilkenny last Sunday in the Allianz league.
KERRY (SF v Down): B Kealy; M Ó Sé, D Bohan, K Young; P Crowley, A O’Mahony, B Maguire; A Maher, B Sheehan; P Galvin, Darran O’Sullivan, Declan O’Sullivan; J O’Donoghue, K Donaghy, P Curtin.
ARMAGH (SF v Mayo): P McEvoy; A Mallon, B Donaghy, D McKenna; K Dyas, P Duffy, F Moriarty; C Vernon, M Mackin; A Forker, B Mallon, A Duffy; C Rafferty, J Kingham, G McParland.
CORK (SF v Donegal): K O’Halloran; R Carey, Eoin O’Mahony, E Cotter; N O’Leary, G Canty, P Kissane; A O’Connor, F Goold; P Kerrigan, M Collins, P Kelly; C O’Neill, D O’Connor, B O’Driscoll.
TYRONE (SF v Louth): J Devine; A McCrory, C Clarke, PJ Quinn; C McCarron, P Harte, D McCaul; M Murphy, J McMahon; R McNabb, M Donnelly, P McNiece; K Coney, M Penrose, O Mulligan.
GALWAY (SF v Westmeath): M Breathnach; K McGrath, F Hanley, K Kelly; G Bradshaw, J Duane, G Sice; T Flynn, J Bergin; C Doherty, P Conroy, M Hehir; M Martin, N Joyce, D Cummins.
TIPPERARY (SH v Clare): B Cummins; C O’Brien, J Coghlan, M Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields); D Maher, C O’Mahony, S Maher (Burgess); D Young, J Woodlock; G Ryan, N McGrath, A Ryan; J O’Neill, B O’Meara, T Hammersley.