LGFA record €2m surplus as relationship with GAA 'has never been stronger'

The healthy figures were recorded despite gate receipts collapsing by 94% on the year previous
LGFA record €2m surplus as relationship with GAA 'has never been stronger'

The collapse in gate receipts was offset by €1m in grant aid from the Sport Ireland Resilience fund. Picture: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

The LGFA recorded a surplus of €2m for 2020, despite gate receipts collapsing by 94% on the year previous.

The accounts to be presented at this weekend’s Annual Congress show the LGFA’s income of €5.62m for 2020 represents only a marginal decrease on the 2019 figure of €5.75m.

A drop of 35% in year-on-year expenditure - €3.6m in 2020, down from €5.5m in 2019 - meant the association turned a profit of €2,002,977 last year.

The LGFA's €2m surplus was achieved despite the association taking in just €43k in gate receipts, a sharp fall on their 2019 gate receipts total of €755k. Because of Government restrictions, the All-Ireland ladies football junior, intermediate, and senior championships were played behind closed doors last year.

The collapse in gate receipts was offset by €1m in grant aid from the Sport Ireland Resilience fund. A further €700,000 grant was received from Sport Ireland in relation to the 2020 All-Ireland Championship, which commenced after the 2020 financial year end. This sum will be reflected in the LGFA’s 2021 accounts.

Elsewhere, LGFA CEO Helen O’Rourke has said the association’s working relationship with the GAA “has never been stronger”.

In her annual report, O’Rourke said the GAA, LGFA, and Camogie Association “will continue to grow this relationship and are committed to exploring a framework for further integration into the future”.

It is the CEO’s belief, however, that there are some areas where “it remains important to have a GAA, LGFA and Camogie Association specific focus to ensure each association is meeting their member’s needs”.

Elsewhere, former Galway manager Tim Rabbitt has said he is “deeply hurt” by O’Rourke’s accusation that he attempted to “destroy the integrity of the association and the people involved”.

O’Rourke, in her annual report, took issue with comments made by Rabbitt in the aftermath of Galway’s All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Cork on December 6. Rabbitt remarked after the game that "we don’t seem to have the officialdom in the Association that can keep pace with" the growth of the sport.

The All-Ireland semi-final was overshadowed by a venue change six days before the game and a second venue change on the morning of the game, as well as the throw-in time being brought forward by half an hour on the morning of the fixture.

“I am extremely disappointed to be brought back into the controversy surrounding last year's All-Ireland semi-final. At all times, my concern has and will always be what is best for the players,” said Rabbit, when contacted.

“I wish to state that at no time has any member of the LGFA organisation, including the president, contacted me since the All-Ireland semi-final to speak to me about the events on the day. The Galway players have not yet received the apology that they deserve. If lessons are to be truly learnt, let's start there.”

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