Jim McGuinness makes passionate defence of GAA provincial championships

Jim McGuinness

“You have to try protect that history”.

Former Donegal manager Jim McGuinness has criticised upcoming GAA proposals saying they need to value the provincial championships more.

The 2012 All Ireland winning manager was speaking on Sky Sports where they discussed GAA proposals to re-vitalise the All Ireland championship.

Speaking on Sky Sports, McGuinness responded to the point that the provincials need better marketing.

He said: “That’s what they said about the Railway Cup, and the Railway Cup doesn’t exist anymore. It needs to be marketed better, they need to do this and that. There needs to be 60,000 at the games. And now it’s gone, and once it’s gone, it’s gone.”

GAA Championship Proposals

The GAA will discuss the proposals later in the year after deciding to postpone conversations at the congress earlier in the year.

Firstly, Proposal A would see the provincial championships retained.

The change, however, would see four groups of eight created. Some Leinster and Ulster counties would switch to Munster and Connacht to balance numbers. Furthermore, each province would have two groups of four for a round-robin phase. As a result, the winner of each group will progress to the relevant provincial final.

The second and third-placed teams (16 in total) will progress to Round 1 of the All Ireland Series.

The fourth-placed teams, only from Division 3 and 4, in each group would head into the knock-out Tailteann Cup.

There would then be three rounds of qualifiers. This would determine the four teams who would take on the provincial champions in the All-Ireland quarter-finals.

Proposal B would see the National League format merged with the Championship. This means each team playing seven matches in their respective divisions, it would then filter into an All-Ireland series. The preliminary All Ireland quarter finals would see the teams that finish second and third in Division 2 would be drawn to play the teams that finish top of Division 3 and 4.

The All Ireland quarter finals proper would see the top four teams from Division 1 drawn to play against the team that finishes 5th in Division 1, the Division 2 winners and the winners of the preliminary quarter-finals. The traditional semi finals and final would follow.

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