‘It’s becoming Aussie Rules’ ”...

‘It’s becoming Aussie Rules’ ”“ Meath’s Andy McEntee bemoans uncertainty over proposed rules change

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It is as yet uncertain whether or not the proposed rule changes to Gaelic football become a regular feature of the game. Currently under observation in the preliminary provincial competitions, opinions regarding their effectiveness remain splintered.

Analysing the thoughts of certain inter-county managers on OTB AM this morning, Kildare’s Cian O’Neill was the sole advocate for their usage despite the reservations of Armagh’s Kieran McGeeney, Carlow’s Turlough O’Brien and Fermanagh’s Rory Gallagher. 

Projecting various doomsday scenarios for what could go wrong with the proposed new rules, Meath’s Andy McEntee has thus far offered a balanced view regarding the necessity for change; albeit in a more decisive manner, perhaps.

Speaking to OTB AM last week, McEntee shared his more immediate concerns as he and others like him attempt to juggle the demands of training for two systems.

“They way they are going about this, they’re making little of the National League,” McEntee stated of the GAA’s current indecision regarding the implementation of the new rules.

“They’re making an experiment out of it, and it’s not an experiment for us. For teams in our situation, it’s hugely important.

“You’re going to be experiment with the biggest part of your season – it’s seven games.”

Arguing that should the rules go no further than the National League, teams could unduly be placed in a division that does not reflect the actuality of the game, there is the added possibility that inter-county managers may subsequently lose their job on account of poor results.

Having featured in the first of the O’Byrne Cup games to abide by the proposed rules, McEntee retains a sense of scepticism regarding some clear deficiencies in the plan.

“The rule that concerns me most is the mark within ’45 metres,” McEntee stated. “It becomes a game of Aussie Rules.”

Describing a scene whereby two kicks and catches may result in an uncontested score, the Meath manager remains open to the possibility that changes can be made; a stark comparison to a number of his contemporaries.

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