"Fix the bloody fixtures" - Liam Griffin on the Club Players Association and the need for urgent change

Ex-Wexford manager discusses the new body's plans with Off The Ball

Liam Griffin, Wexford,

Former Manager Liam Griffin ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

Former Wexford hurling manager Liam Griffin feels the requirement to get a two-thirds majority is an "inhibitor" to making future changes in the GAA such as a fixture overhaul.

The Rosslare native has been tasked with the role of Fixtures Co-ordinator as the Club Players' Association was officially launched on Monday.

As the new body outlined in its introduction, there is one key aim: "Our main focus is to fix the fixtures."

1996 All Ireland winner Griffin will have a key role in those discussions and doubled down on the point about the fixture issue in the GAA which he feels needs "urgent" change.

"Somebody needs to fix the fixtures and we need to address it as a major issue in the GAA," he said on Off The Ball.  

"We've only one agenda: Fix the fixtures."

Griffin also feels there is no "moral authority" for change until the views of players can be surveyed en masse and statistics can be drawn up that can then be "put before the powers at be" to spark an overhaul for the benefit of the club player.

Executive member Aaron Kernan, Secretary Declan Brennan and Chairman Michael Briody ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

Pushing future proposals and changes through Congress for example would require a two thirds majority when the delegates cast a vote and that can block change.

Griffin feels that needs to change and "above all, fix the bloody fixtures". 

"We're still stuck in a system where we need to get that through that system and that's very easy to block progress," he said.

"I absolutely feel that needs to change. It's actually an inhibitor and what we're talking about here is for the good of the game." 

Griffin also talked about why he has decided to get involved in the CPA.

"Because of all of the complications and the evolving fixture system that has not been sympathetic to the ordinary grassroot player, who is the foundation for every county team, I suppose it culminated in this when [CPA Secretary and founder] Declan [Brennan] rang me and asked me would I get involved. I felt that I would like to get involved because I think we have legacy issues in all sport," he said. 

Griffin that things were "really bad" for the club player in his own playing days which encompassed a period of straight knockout championships.