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Mayo star Andy Moran would like to see the GAA introduce a 50-yard penalty to cut out cynical play

The current Footballer of the Year accepts that it would be difficult to get the rule brought in, however.

Moran with Paddy McGrath of Donegal yesterday.
Moran with Paddy McGrath of Donegal yesterday.
Image: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

KEVIN MCLOUGHLIN’S DRAMATIC late point saw Mayo earn a draw against Donegal at Ballybofey yesterday to preserve their top-flight status.

However, former Dublin footballer Ciaran Whelan then highlighted last year’s beaten All-Ireland finalists on RTÉ’s Allianz League Sunday for dragging opposing players to the ground during the dying minutes of the Division 1 encounter.

Whelan also expressed his belief that there should be some sort of punishment for teams who attempt to “take the life out of the game” in injury-time.

Mayo’s star forward Andy Moran featured as a guest on the latest episode of Second Captains today, and presenter Eoin McDevitt questioned him about the tactic.

“I don’t think we pulled them down en masse,” Moran replied. “I think there was one incident and it kind of got into a brawl at the top of the ‘D’. It’s something that happens and I think the rule-makers have to come up with some solution to get rid of it.

“It is part of the game in some way. I would like if it wasn’t but if you look at other games, there are different forms of cynical play to kill out a game. In soccer, if you’re 1-0 you’re going to do it. I’m sure in rugby there are little technical things you do to slow it down as well, and I’m sure there are in every other game in the world.

Pulling down a man probably isn’t the right thing to do, but in the situation I don’t know how you change it. There probably should be a rule brought up to change that.”

Asked to suggest a new law that would go some way to eradicating the cynical play, he pointed to the 50-metre penalty in the Australian Football League (AFL).

“I was always a fan of the 50-yard penalty in Australian Rules,” he added. “It’s a very good rule, I think it’s smart and it brings the ball up. For that to come in, it would be a fairly dramatic change in the GAA and I’m not sure how we would get that one through.

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“It’s a relevant rule to our game and you’re not going to pull someone down if the ball is going to be moved up from the 13 to the halfway line, and you’re a point up or a point down.”

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