Jim Gavin to continue numbers game with Dublin team

Jim Gavin says finding a settled Dublin team isn’t his priority and indicated as many as 40 players could feature in the Allianz League.

Gavin has already fielded 33 players while three St Vincent’s players as well as Kevin O’Brien and Kevin Nolan will feature at some stage. Alan Brogan may also return.

Former Dublin boss Tommy Carr described it as an embarrassment of riches and said the lack of a settled team was concerning. The back to back Allianz League champions are now second from bottom in the table.

Diarmuid Connolly is expected to return to training in advance of Saturday’s league clash with Mayo while Ger Brennan and Gavin Burke have also been called in from Vincent’s.

“We are not looking for a settled team,” said Gavin. “Most teams that we are playing are settled. We are trying new things, tactically we are trying new things. Some are working, some don’t. This is part of the process and we want to give players a chance to stake a claim not only in the starting 15 or our squad of 26 but on the panel itself. To do that, there is a process you have to go through and you have to give each player a fair chance.

“It can be a rough sea but we are going to hold our course and we are very much in control of where we want to go. I think once we come out the far side of that process, we will be in a much stronger place come Championship.”

Gavin was speaking at the launch of a three-year sponsorship deal between Dublin GAA and Bavaria non alcoholic beer. He explained Connolly and Brennan will come back first from Vincent’s though Burke will initially play with the U21s.

Gavin has questioned the democracy of the GAA after the decision to reject the clock/hooter proposal. Over 83% of Congress delegates backed the Central Council motion not to pursue the technology despite previously supporting it at the 2010 and 2013 Congress meetings.

“We pride ourselves that it’s a very democratic association,” said Gavin.

“I think this is the third time it’s been brought to Congress. For it not to pass, I found that very surprising. I understood the concerns that people had with it. But for a committee to have problems with it rather than solutions, I find that a bit bizarre.

“I certainly think in any high performing management or company or organisation, you’d expect people in committees to come back with solutions rather than problems.”


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