Irish Independent - GAA Articles


I’m surprised that the Endapendent has room on its website for anything other than some pseudo-royal wedding that was taking place yesterday.

Good man Ray , putting o se back in his box .:grinning::grinning:


What box is he putting him in ? Kennelly is a businessman let’s not forget in these transfers . Talk to Nicolas Walsh , Kevin Devine,Tommy Walsh etc lads who got their bodies broken into pieces by the AFL system and spat out .
To me it’s a joke of a move for 95 percent of lads . Rarely does anyone make it , they come home worse GAA players then when left , uprooted from family and friends at 18 and end up having to start university at a later age then when they left
Outside Kennelly , only Pearse Hanley and Zac tuohy and briefly Martin Clarke have cut it . That’s 4 out of at least 40 that have tried it .
They live on a pittance for 2 years before any decision is made . Real end of the rainbow stuff. If Tadhg took some Dublin players you’d see the DCB kicking him out of dodge fairly lively


Is there something I’m missing here?? Are these lads forced onto Qantas flights at gunpoint? They don’t owe anybody anything. Their life and what they do with it is their business only. Bloody hell …


If lads are offered a chance to have a professional career playing Oz rules why shouldn’t they take it ??
Lots of lads haven’t made it that tried it , but there a number that have .ie stynes, Kennelly , Clarke ,Hanley ,Walsh .
Ultimately it’s a personal decision if they decide to make a crack at it and would say at the back of their mind they don’t want to be thinking in 10/20 years what if ??


What’s the ratio have? It’s between 5 and 8 percent. It’s even less then making it at professional soccer. Even lads let go from top premership clubs in England still earn 5-10 grand a week playing in the English lower leagues.

With this you’re left with absolutely nothing.

How many of them have successful GAA careers when they come back? Not many.

So in 20 years time sitting back - they failed at AFL and they failed at GAA.

That’s a fairly poor outcome for an individual who was quite obviously very, very talented.


Absolutely their choice but for most of them its been a bad choice.

They come back home and most of them drift away from playing GAA.

I don’t see the attraction myself . Good luck to them but if AFL took Con O Callaghan, Brian Fenton and a few others you’d rapidly see a different attitude


Sure we all make bad choices with our lives. [Yes dear, I’ll be with you in a minute]. These lads weren’t put on earth solely for mine or your entertainment. I wouldn’t like to lose Con or anyone else for that matter but that’s not relevant TBH. I really don’t see how or even why you would stop a young person from following their own dream and even if they don’t make it the whole life experience would surely stand to them .


Would people here think our own Ciaran Kilkenny benefitted from his AFL experience, or not? In hindsight, he may have played the system well: went out for a year (? cant remember exactly how long he stayed for) for the experience/professional footballer life, then returned back to integrate into (a winning) Dublin inter-county team?


He wasn’t there long enough . But I’d say his kicking fell off the map


It’s fine for lads who have a third level education and can fall back to being an engineer or whatever, but if you are a good footballer/athlete but don’t have much between the ears then the Aussie rules is a very attractive route to making a living. It’s also attractive for any young fellow, particularly if he’s from a county who are never going to be successful. I don’t like Tadgh Kennelly much (not alone did he not write his autobiography, apparently he didn’t even read it) but he’s not doing anything wrong here. Of course we wouldn’t like it if he took some young Dublin players over, but that’s not the point.


So what exactly was the Dublin attitude when Kilkenny was going?

Think you might recall it was to regret his move but wish him the very best!


Couldn’t agree more. He lasted until Christmas of his first year. The ‘following your dream’ may have as many dark aspects as bright ones. I’m thinking of Darren Sutherland and others who didn’t make it or didn’t fit in. As stated, many more end in tears than make it. Professionalism has harmed many sports. It may be a crazy thought but maybe, just maybe, the dream might be to have a job that you like, or at least one that you can stand, and to play a sport that you love as a hobby!!


They don’t live on a pittance at all. Kennelly negotiated that players in the category that Irish guys are get a minimum wage of $80,000 with free rent, a free car and 4 return flights for the families to come over a year. If that’s a pittance I’m not even getting peanuts.


Fighting with Shaun Edwards, pursuing excellence and why Mayo won’t win Sam: Paul Kimmage meets Fergus Connolly


well my information is that it’s closer to 40k then 80k

And the exchange rate is two thirds . So 40k would equal about 26k per annum

So I hope you’re right about your (80k) 53k euros which isn’t a lot in my view for a professional athlete
Someone playing league one soccer in the U.K. Would earn that in about two months and live a bit closer to home too.
Good luck up them but theyll need it and once Kennelly stays well outside the confines of Dublin I’ll be happy enough . He can ransack his own county to his hearts content


Which is crazy. He played GAA all his life with a kicking style. Went there for 6 months and completely changed it, and has been back how long, 3/4 years and he cant correct it??


It’s a different sport and requires a completely different kicking action . The assumption is these are similar sports .
The reality is they aren’t the first cousin of each other - hence why so few make it


Your missing my point, he played it for 6 months, but has been playing GAA for 20 odd years, but the kicking he learned in 6 months is how he is still kicking


when did you see him kicking in the last 2 years.???.. i see him taking as many steps as possible often in the wrong direction and then at best a lateral handpass…