Waterford county secretary Tim O’Keeffe believes that the football championship should be reduced in numbers and has called on the GAA to halve the present amount of contenders.
O’Keefe was speaking just a week after Waterford lost by 17 points to All-Ireland champions Cork in the Munster Championship. However, he insisted that his comments are not as a direct result of that match:
“The system has always been flawed. Is there any other sport in the world where the strongest and weakest are thrown in together? If it hasn’t worked in the 127-year history of the GAA, it’s unlikely to start working now”.
He pointed to the fact that the weakest and strongest teams never meet in hurling or at club level, and feels the same should be the case in football:
“It doesn’t happen in hurling or at club level either. Donegal won the Lory Meagher Cup but nobody would dream of putting them in against Tipperary next year. No county puts a weak junior club team in against the senior county champions either.”
O’Keeffe is in favour of a new system in which only 16-18 of the 33 teams should compete for the Sam Maguire every year. This would then allow the remaining teams to compete in a competition of their own.