Laois official warns there's "war coming" over player pool

Kieran Leavy has concerns

Portarlington, GAA

General view of Portarlington GAA ground ©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

The assistant treasurer of the Laois county board official has told GAA clubs to "prepare for war" against other sports.

Kieran Leavy was speaking at a Laois county board meeting regarding the changing population size within the county - specifically the town of Portarlington - and the impact that is having on Gaelic Games.

"The boom in population has had a detrimental effect on our town," he said in comments published by The Leinster Express.

"Country teams are getting stronger in some places, but it's not the case in Portarlington. There are people coming down from Dublin, and they are playing different sports. Soccer in Portarlington is so strong at the moment, and they are moving to a summer season now too, the same as our juvenile season."

Continuing his point on the relationship between the sports, Leavy indicated his feeling that battle lines need to be set down.

"My opinion is that if a young lad wants to go and play soccer, you tell him you don't want him any more," said Leavy.

"Lads might not agree with me, but we have to draw a line somewhere. There is a war coming, and if we don't draw down some battle lines we are going to lose players.

"Young players are told in soccer and rugby that they will be picked for Midlands or Leinster teams and it sounds great, but they are being forgotten about. The only ones looking after them are the GAA, no one can look after them as good as us."