Roscommon U20 manager Shane Curran has questioned the thinking behind the U20 provincial competitions being played during the Leaving Cert.
The GAA changed from Minor and U21 to U17 and U20. the U17 has started in some provinces already while the U20 competition is due to get underway in June.
Speaking on the Super8s Podcast Curran said: “It’s not really fair on players. The competition itself is scheduled right, smack, bang in the middle of the Leaving Cert. So whatever genius thought of that was really thinking of player welfare. Then you have the other issue of players studying for exams, thesis, all that sort of stuff.”
Due to the month of April being assigned to the clubs Curran’s U20s assembled as a full panel for the first time at the end of the month. He said: “Really collectively we seen them for the first time on the 25th of April. It gives us five weeks to work with a team for a tournament and a competition.”
Provincial success is something Curran and Roscommon would love but the former goalkeeper admitted he and his management team are looking towards the future: “For us it’s about really developing the players, developing their personalities, developing them as people, hopefully, developing an ethos and culture and a leadership mentality. Hopefully reflect well on them when they go on to become senior club players or senior footballers for Roscommon.”
Speaking of future senior footballers, Curran is hopeful that the structures that in place at underage level will augur well for the county at senior level in the future: “We are fortunate enough in Roscommon that we have good underage structure. We have good coaching which is important. If we can get to a level where we can compete with the bigger boys; Galway and Mayo, in Connacht, in particular and maybe get into the Super8s or whatever way the championship format is going to go in the future.”