Counihan: Don’t forget about 2020 minors

MONAGHAN minor boss Mark Counihan has reiterated his pleas for the revised GAA calendar to include space for the conclusion of the 2020 Ulster and All-Ireland U-17 Championships.

The GAA are expected to announce their fixture plans in the coming days as restrictions ease on both sides of the border. County board officials will be made aware of the plans this evening.

The Oriel county were preparing for an Ulster Minor semi-final against Fermanagh with Derry and Tyrone due to meet on the other side of the draw when the GAA temporarily stopped all action last December.

Kerry had already claimed the Munster title by that stage, Roscommon the Connacht crown while Offaly and Meath were getting ready to battle it out for the Leinster honours.

Counihan is certain that the remaining eight teams can be easily accommodated.

We’ve been assured on many occasions that we are a priority, and hopefully that is still a case,” said the Truagh clubman. “Hopefully there is still a window before May.

If they could get the Ulster Championship finished before May before the National Leagues start, it would be great.

At that stage you’re down to four teams in the country and I’m sure they could get those semi-finals run off in the summer.

We were told we would be prioritised. We don’t feel like we have been yet but we wait for the announcement.”

Minor and u-20 inter-county squads are still without a return date, although senior county teams in all codes can start training again on April 19.

Counihan said that it has been a stressful period for his team, especially the glacial nature of the easing of restrictions.

It has been without doubt the longest and most difficult lockdown that we have had,” he said. “There has been a lot of negativity with the slowness of certain things opening up.

The thought of football has kept them going.”

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