THE GAA’S PROPOSED revamp on the All-Ireland senior football championship will come in for a three year phase if passed later this month.

The change to the football structure, which was proposed last August, will require a two-thirds majority to be passed.

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It is being brought forward by the GAA’s Central Council and will come into place for three years, from 2018 to 2020. If passed, the format would then have to be voted on at Congress in 2021, to be adopted firmly in the GAA rule book.

It’s one of three motions linked to changes in the championship format. Each motion is to be voted on separately and are not dependent on the success or otherwise of one another.

The motion on the scheduling of the All-Ireland senior finals now states that both must be played before the end of August, but does not stress in what order. This means that the hurling final could be held after the football decider.


Finally the motion for extra-time in the event of draws in senior championship games is also set to be voted on but provincial and All-Ireland senior finals will be exempt from this.

Extra-time will also not apply if football quarter-final round-robin games end in draws, as in this case the game will finish with both team getting a point apiece in their group tie.

It creates the prospect of all other senior championship games being finished on the day, to ease fixture congestion at clubs and erase the uncertainty that replays can create.

Extra-time will also be obligatory in the event of draws in the following competitions:

  • Inter-county U21/U20 championships
  • Inter-county minor championships, including finals
  • Inter-county intermediate championships
  • Inter-county junior championships
  • Knockout stages of the national leagues
  • Inter-provincial competitions
  • Inter-county tournaments
  • Inter-club provincial and All-Ireland championships
  • Sigerson and Fitzgibbon Cups
  • Other games in subsidiary competitions

Other motions set to be on the agenda related to the championship format include a call from Tyrone for the All-Ireland football final to be played on the last Sunday in August and the hurling final to played one week previous.

Laois club St Joseph’s are looking for a change to the football championship so that those 16 teams who don’t qualify for the four provincial finals will go into four round-robin groups of four. The top two teams in each will then progress to the second round.

Carlow’s proposal wants all provincial finals to be completed by the second Sunday in July, along with changes to the scheduling of the All-Ireland football qualifiers.

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