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St. Vincent's Senior Team

Posted: Thu Mar 26, 2015 7:40 pm
by NewEra
I know there have been many threads on this in the past and I accept that many people will have no interest in rehashing same but I feel this must be discussed. Offaly football needs parish football and in this instance Daingean parish football and Offaly needs it competing at the top table. It needs young players pushing up from underage, challenging and competing and improving themselves and improving standards within the county.

The mentality of the old brigade within the 4 clubs still very much exists regardless of success for St. Vincent’s or regardless of the pleas from every player that comes out of the St. Vincent’s set up year after year. Their response – Say nothing. Let things blow over. And continue playing 3rd tier and 4th tier football in the county. Let potential county players wane in the depths of junior football. But it’s all worth it to win a junior title or win a division 3 title I suppose (I stress this is the attitude of all 4 clubs and I am not singling out any one team) I see, hear and read comments from people involved in the four clubs who they themselves have never played to any high standard and who are happy for today’s generation to ply their trade in a similar way. Not only is this wasting talent, it means player’s standards drop, they lose interest, preparation and training levels drop. Other players in the parish leave football altogether and play rugby or soccer instead where they can play at the highest level free of choice if they are good enough. The ‘old brigade’ should be ashamed of themselves and for the small minded stance they take.

I would propose the following options:
- Disband the four teams and join as one (Unlikely to ever happen)
- Senior Parish team while the 4 clubs remain in existence
- Divisional Competition for parish teams (not appealing to an already jammed fixture list)
- Enter a Senior Parish team for League only on a trial basis
- Set up a new parish club and work from bottom grade up (Just a notion. I do not even know if possible)

Further options if a senior team was made to make it work:
The 4 clubs agree to begin training in March. Leaving Dec, Jan and Feb for the senior team to get serious preparation under their belts. After this either allow designated nights for the senior team to train or work a system where it every alternative week the senior team has access to players. This does not stop the 4 clubs continuing with training. Dual teams work in the same way across the country – ‘’football week’’ and ‘’hurling week’’

I know one divisional team in West Cork who are made up of junior and intermediate clubs. How they work it is as follows – The club teams train on a designated night. The senior team train on the same night after the clubs on the same pitch. It does mean a heavy night for players involved with both but I am sure players who want to be involved would have no problem with this. Another option.

With regard to conflicting weekends for league, the senior team’s matches could be essentially held on ‘’hurling weekends’’ as an exception. There are not many Division 1 football teams who are competing in hurling and those that are fair enough. At the end of the day fixtures can be fit in somewhere.

Funding. A big issue for the old brigade. And it is an issue. A big sponsor would be required. I would also sense fundraising would be required from very early on so a strong committee would be required. Player membership would have to be in line with what Dublin clubs pay – circa €150 - €180. Many Offaly clubs still charge €50 which I feel is unbelievable value when you look at clubs across the country.

Outside management would also be required with selectors from each of the 4 clubs.

For all the nay-sayers and negative vibes, move over. Let the players play and let them play together and as a parish. There were some moving speeches at the St. Vincent’s Dinner Dance last weekend from Kevin Kilmurray and Eoin Carroll. Both spoke eloquently and passionately about a parish team. Kevin Kilmurray in particular spoke with huge admiration for the 2 in a row champions and what they could achieve together as a parish at senior level and encouraged them no end to make it happen. Eoin Carroll spoke of his team of brothers who he doesn’t want to split from, never mind play against. People across this county and across the country speak of Offaly’s demise from the top table. These same people complain about the barren period for county teams. Make a change or watch as Offaly remains a wastleland and Daingean parish remains the graveyard of ambition. I am not saying Daingean parish would win a senior overnight or that Offaly fortunes would change overnight but change is needed. I hope the County Board can see this and can facilitate in change and I hope the old brigade are washed aside.

Re: St. Vincent's Senior Team

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:52 pm
by Lone Shark
New Era, welcome on board, and I hope you don't mind that I've merged the topic, since this has all been brought up before. Certainly there's no problem with discussing it, since the recent under-21 championship has naturally brought the issue to the fore again.

However like it or not, there are a lot of questions that need to be answered before this is a realistic option, and a big part of the reason why it hasn't happened is that this tends to come up as a kneejerk response to a good underage side, rather than a fully thought out plan. Most of the issues are laid out in this thread earlier, but the key ones are as follows:

(1) A parish team, put together while the existing four clubs continue to do their thing, is almost certainly doomed to failure. All evidence from around the country backs this option. You use the Cork option, but there are several aspects to that which aren't applicable to Offaly. These divisional sides struggle to compete with senior clubs, with only two championship wins between them since 1991. That's despite the fact that Carbery is an amalgamation of 26 Junior clubs, Imokilly is 23, and Duhallow is 19 (for example). They have other divisional teams to compete with so the fixture list can be altered to suit them, and they have a longstanding historical resonance. Nothing about this is applicable to Daingean parish.

(2) The idea of playing football on "hurling weekends" doesn't work in Offaly, where 12 of our senior A and B clubs are in effect dual clubs, while eight of the 16 play senior hurling. You can't just keep playing Rhode and Walsh Island all the time, eventually you'll have to fulfil a fixture against a Rynaghs, Shamrocks or Tullamore.

(3) If you try and get player membership of €150 from a lad who just wants to play a bit of junior, you'll be told where to go fairly fast in a lot of cases. That's in a climate where already you're talking about halving the number of adult teams in the parish (presuming Vincents fields 3 adult teams, as opposed to the six that are now fielded) and so leaving them with far less chance of game time. You'll get it off the lads who want to play senior all right, but to say that you'll get enough to fund the €20,000 or so it'll cost you to properly fund a senior team for the year (and that's presuming ye don't go paying a manager or anything) then you're dreaming. This isn't the kind of situation where it's all right to just presume that "if you build it, they will come".

(4) For the reasons in (1) above, this only has any chance of success if the four clubs agree to disband, and unite under one banner. On this issue generally, as far as I'm concerned it's entirely for the club members within the parish to decide what ye want to do. As a Ferbane native and now a St Aidans member in Roscommon, I'm certainly not going to tell ye what to do in that regard. However all those fifty somethings that you talk about, I'm guessing, are the guys who do the fundraising, who sell the lotto tickets, who fill the committees, who do all the things that keep the club going. The ability to kick the ball over the bar is all very well, but a club with a bad team and a good committee will survive through thick and thin. Vice versa, and you can't be sure. Are all these lads in the early twenties willing to fill the administrative roles needed, to sell tickets and do all the other spadework? If not, then ye may get the "old brigade" (to use your term) on board.

At the end of the day, I'd like nothing more than to see football thriving in Daingean parish and for a string of county standard footballers to come out of there - but all of this has to be thought through, and nothing that I've read from anybody suggests that it has been. So lay it out for me - how will it be funded (realistically), how many championship teams will ye field, how many league teams, what will be the championship structure to accommodate this, how will ye get support for this structure, what happens if ye have a few players who want to play hurling, what happens if somebody like Gareth Mann becomes a fixture with the county senior hurlers? You might call these negative vibes if you like, but until the questions are answered, it's irresponsible of the county board to advocate anything like this.

Re: St. Vincent's Senior Team

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 5:06 pm
by Fargo Boyle
Why always does Parish debate centre around Daingean and St Vincents? Lets remember Daingean and Cappincur were Senior teams in the 90s and Daingean senior in the 00s. A slump in their fortunes does not mean they need to amalgamate in order to improve the situation. If the individual teams are poor i cant see them producing a strong Senior team. Furthermore Cappincur are probably favourites for the Intermediate and I am sure would like a good crack at this on their own.

In fact if a St Vincents team was entered into a Senior championship I would reckon they would be relegated. Dont see how promoting a Vincents Senior team would be fair on existing Senior B and intermediate teams. Also who would run this club and finance it - dont think any Daingean parish club are bulging with cash presently.

Also Rhode are not a Parish team yet that doesnt seem to prevent their success. Also Intermediate champs and favourites for the Senior B Raheen dont need Killeigh, Ballinagar or Killurin to compete at the highest level (have Killeigh and Killurin amalgamated - apologies if they have)

All in all I dont see an easy solution here. I know the players and officials that represent the 4 corners of the Parish are proud to do so irregardless of the level at which they compete. If anything the problem should possibly be looked at the other way round. Can Daingean or any of the clubs enter their own respective juvenille teams - more underage players actually playing would be a good thing. Daingean schools are very competive as well as Cappagh. Maybe Vincents could enter 2 teams per grade. No silver bullets in this one

Re: St. Vincent's Senior Team

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:25 pm
by High School Musical
Can we really trust a man who uses the word irregardless?
I don't think so.

Re: St. Vincent's Senior Team

Posted: Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:26 pm
by High School Musical
Can we really trust a man who uses the word irregardless?
I don't think so.