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Pay for play on the way in GAA 'in about 10-15 years' says one All-Ireland winning boss

Eugene McGee also reckons the majority of inter-county managers are getting paid.

Interesting views from Eugene McGee on the issue of pay for play in GAA.
Interesting views from Eugene McGee on the issue of pay for play in GAA.
Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

A FORMER ALL-Ireland winning manager has predicted that GAA inter-county players will be paid for playing ‘in about 10-15 years’.

Eugene McGee, who steered Offaly to their famous victory in 1982 and is now a respected GAA pundit, made the comments this morning when publicising his new book ‘The GAA In My Time’.

McGee also claims the vast majority of inter-county managers are being paid and he believes that payment for players is coming down the tracks.

“I’d say in about 10-15 years [they will be getting paid] because the GAA is now awash with money with sponsorship and all that sort of thing,” remarked McGee when speaking to Sean O’Rourke on RTÉ Radio 1 this morning.

“GAA attendances are keeping up and going stronger all the time so there’s oodles of money in the GAA. The GPA are being given €1.8m a year to run their business so there’s lots of other money flowing in.

Source: James Crombie/INPHO

“There’s a lot of players getting a lot of money at the moment. The GAA loosened the rules about 10 years ago to allow players involved in commercial promotions. But that is expanded greatly. There’ll be players making maybe €10,000 a year from that, no trouble at all.

“If you go to Croke Park to appear for a photograph for some promotion, it would be a bad day if you wouldn’t get €1,000. It’s big bucks.

“I would say part-time payment could happen in 10 years’ time because the public at large are getting a bit sensitive about this.  They feel that a lot of players should get some recompense, they work so hard.”

Managers

McGee is also firm in his belief that the majority of current senior bosses at inter-county level around the country are receiving money.

“Apart from Dublin and Kerry, I’d say the whole lot. I don’t know about Tyrone, Mickey Harte, maybe not. But the vast majority are, that’s been going on for years, it’s going on for 15 years or more. I’d be surprised if the average isn’t €40,000. [It’s] probably more than that for a lot of them.”

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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