Prenty urges football to ‘administer elixir’

Connacht secretary John Prenty believes the Football Review Committee’s proposals have to be heeded if cynicism is to be curbed in Gaelic football.

In his report to provincial convention this month, he wrote: “The most disturbing trend in modern Gaelic football has been the increase in cynical play. This has the potential to drive away our young and our most skilful players from the game.

“Our delegates and county officials have the ultimate say in what happens the proposals going forward and in my opinion have a simple question to answer: do you wish to preside over the further decline of the game of Gaelic football or are we prepared to administer the elixir proposed by the Football Review Committee to breathe new life into the development of football in the future? We may not get the same chance again.”

Prenty also said Mayo’s decision not to send a team to play in last October’s FBD Connacht League away final in New York disappointed a lot of people.

“The Council awarded the title to New York and fined Mayo a token €10,000. The decision by Mayo was a major insult to the Council, to the New York Board and team, to our sponsors FBD Insurance but especially to the many Mayo supporters in the Big Apple. The wounds will take a long time to heal.”

He also warned that the problem of rural depopulation has to become matter for national discussion.

“Are amalgamations the answer? Which is the greatest challenge: to amalgamate with a neighbouring club or clubs and lose our identity, or to fight for our name and pride of place, and play in competitions of reduced numbers? Those are issues that need to be to be discussed. Is this amalgamating forever? How does one get out of this amalgamation situation and go back to where one traditionally was, if the other partner in the amalgamation wishes to retain the status quo?

“Divorce is very difficult in an amalgamation.”

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