New club players association calls for shorter inter-county season

Aaron Kernan (left) with Club Players' Association secretary Declan Brennan
Crossmaglen player and ex-Armagh star Aaron Kernan (left) attended Monday's Club Players' Association launch

A new body which aims to give a voice to GAA club players has suggested that the senior inter-county season could be concluded by early August.

The Club Players Association was officially launched on Monday and a news conference was told that its main aim is a more meaningful programme with a shorter season.

"Players want to play games," said CPA chairman Micheal Briody.

"They don't want endless training sessions and 13-month seasons."

Mr Briody added that players feel "last in line after administrators, CCC members, coaches, paid managers have all had their say".

"This is fundamentally a player welfare issue and together the time has come to address it before we do irreparable damage.

"Since the idea of the CPA was first floated in the autumn we have been inundated with emails and calls from club players expressing their frustration at the way in which our fixtures are managed," added Briody, who is chairman of the St Brigids club in Meath.

The new club players' body is not yet officially recognised but a Wexford motion calling for this to happen is due to be debated at next month's annual GAA Congress.

CPA secretary and former Monaghan selector Declan Brennan added that the GAA's current fixtures programme "is a mess".

"Other less important issues have been given prominence," added the CPA secretary.

"Players want regular meaningful games, they want to enjoy our games and they want some downtime during a recognised closed season."

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