Dublin football manager Jim Gavin has questioned the three-week break in the Allianz Football League, saying that it is “beyond” him why some of his players are being asked to play three games in eight days.
Although the league format takes a break, there is a full round of club league fixtures in Dublin, the climax of the Sigerson Cup and Fitzgibbon Cup, the semi-finals of the Interprovincial football series, and the start of the Leinster under-21 football championship. All of these matches will involve some of his county players, and Gavin feels that the “break” in the league means little as a result.
“Players need a break,” he said . “They’ve all got club games coming up next week, and want to go back playing with their club, you would prefer if the league didn’t start until after the Sigerson. Because most of the lads also go back to their colleges this week for the Sigerson and Fitzgibbon Cup as well. So most of them have big games in the next week. To have some guys there playing three games in eight days is just beyond me.”
The quarter-finals of the Sigerson Cup are down for decision tomorrow and Thursday, and the involvement of DCU, UCD, DIT and NUI Maynooth mean a number of players from Dublin will be in action: the semi-finals of the interprovincial football series take place on Sunday, when Leinster play Connacht in Pearse Park in Longford, again meaning match time for a number of players from the capital.
The Leinster under-21 football championship starts today week, February 19th, when Dessie Farrell’s Dublin take on Carlow in Parnell Park. Again, many of Gavin’s senior players will be in action for the side.