You’d want to be up very early in the morning to keep on top of the twists and turns that are taking place around the county Boards of the GAA in the West of Ireland this past ten days.
The draw for the Connacht football Championship was made yesterday but it was the continued unhappiness of benefactors Pat McDonagh in Galway and Tim O’Leary in Mayo that are firing more of the conversations west of the Shannon.
The Irish Independent is reporting this morning that O’Leary who heads up the Mayo International Supporters Federation has written to the mayo County Board seeking information around tendering for the naming rights to McHale Park and taking over the County jersey sponsorship from Elverys Intersport.
Their deal runs through to the end of 2020 and there is no indication that they are looking to exit what has been a long-standing partnership.
O’Leary is said to seeking tender process documentation and calling for a fair process when it comes to the selection of a sponsor.
Now for most County Boards, a competitive pitch looking to fund development would be nirvana but O’Boyle is currently withholding €250,000 of money raised towards the development of an academy for development teams and further development of facilities.
Correspondence is becoming heated and being conducted in public which is making the County Board more than a little uncomfortable at present.
Going south to Galway Pat McDonagh reiterated his call for publication of two reports into the financial management of the Galway County Board.
“Supermac’s acknowledges that a lot of honourable people contribute at all levels of the GAA and whilst there are the beginnings of a necessary change in culture, the path forward cannot be laid until the issues of the past are revealed.
“Supermac’s seeks the transparency and accountability which are vital to confidence going forward. The first steps in this journey require that the two concluded reports into the finances of Galway GAA be published in full or otherwise further investigated by the relevant authorities. Supermac’s is at a loss to understand why these reports have not been published.”
In one ray of light Supermacs then said that the separate relationships they have with the County Camogie and Ladies football Boards are not tied up in this escalating row. Galway won the liberty insurance Camogie All Ireland Championship this year and made it to the final of the TG$ Ladies Football Championships.
Players and Managers, as well as fans, are interested mainly in the ability of the County Board to provide the right conditions in which to perform to the best.
Sponsorship and financial backing are key to this and while the East Coast is flying with continued long term backing for Dublin from AIG and Zurich coming on board with Wexford GAA, things are a lot more stormy in the west, and that’s after the gales of Storm Lorenzo have long subsided.
You can listen back to Rob Hartnett from Sport for Business discussing inter county sponsorship on last weekend’s Saturday Sport from 1:48 to 2:03 on the link below.
Image Credit: Sportsfile