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Thread: All-Ireland League Thread

  1. #201
    Seasoned Pro oriel's Avatar
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    It’s not just the link that most NI teams are dominated by one side, it’s that ALL are apart from Cliftonville. Newry and Warrenpoint are the only other clubs not in that group, but far too small for consideration for AIL and even to make impact in NI.

    The IL therefore is 90% Protestant / Unionist supported, I get the thinking, and if you want to put a label on, most within these groups would probably have voted for brexit too.

    In my view most would appear to be happy to remain with their 3pm Sat afternoon / winter season, only the allure of guaranteed cash will entice Linfield or Glentoran away.

    Finally I’ve nothing against the IL, I enjoy watching the goals most sat at 5pm, just calling it out as I see it, they don’t appear to want to progress, which is amazing given the monies in Europe alone, yet these are pre season games for them, and their champions manager was on holiday not once but twice in recent years for first leg games.

    The playing of GSTQ at their cup final, and especially v Cliftonville is / was just ridiculous, how are they meant to reach out to the other half with this going on?
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  2. #202
    Like the Fonz. Only a dog. Mr A's Avatar
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    The thing is- the IL is progressing. Slowly, steadily facilities and crowds are improving and they have a degree of stability that we can only dream of. Plus their league is competitive whereas in recent years ours isn't. There is a tendency to look down on them in the LOI, but it isn't always warranted.
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  4. #203
    Youth Team bohsmug's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr A View Post
    The thing is- the IL is progressing. Slowly, steadily facilities and crowds are improving and they have a degree of stability that we can only dream of. Plus their league is competitive whereas in recent years ours isn't. There is a tendency to look down on them in the LOI, but it isn't always warranted.
    It seems to be in a better place alright. There'll be another period of ground improvements now that the grants are available to them again.

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    Seasoned Pro oriel's Avatar
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    Progressing in terms of more grounds improved almost all by grants, and that's fine.

    Standard of recent games I saw on tv and often some unfit looking players wouldn't back up progressing quality, nor would the 7-1 hammering Linfield took in the Unite Cup in November.

    The top of the table is tight, makes for competitive games, but not sure crowds are increasing to reflect that, think I read last year the biggest (on avg in 2019) attendances in NI were from Derry City, 3k, open to correction on this, but almost sure Linfield average just over 2k.
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    Watch it quite a lot on TV and in Belfast when I visit in laws.
    A lot of unfit players, very little intensity in the games.Has improved though.

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    It is a very poor standard of football. Is it logical that that would level out in an AIL over a few years ?

  8. #207
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by passinginterest View Post
    Some softening of the NI stance on the Lucid proposals? It's looking like the initial version could be two separate leagues with individual national champions (presumably something like 8 or 10 team leagues with 14/18 game season) before a crossover league to determine all island champions (again similar numbers maybe 8 or 10 teams to finish with a 28 or 36 game season). https://www.the42.ie/ifa-cross-borde...85712-Jan2020/
    It'll be interesting to see what comes out of the Hypercube study.
    Softening? How do you come to that conclusion?

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    International Prospect outspoken's Avatar
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    I was at the presentation In Dundalk today, very impressive but couldn't help feel there's nothing anywhere near concrete in place. Lucid essential admitted a full AIL is a no goer with the IFA and a split league might be the best way to get this up and running at least.

    I spoke to him for BTS TV afterwards, would have liked to have kept him for longer but In fairness to the group they engaged fully with the media and ran overtime so only touched on a few points with him here > https://youtu.be/ZKAhey0tr5I

  10. #209
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EatYerGreens View Post
    I just can't see any grounds on which the north will agree to an All-island league.

    There is small 'p' politics at play here, and a certain mentality. Football in the north is a very unionist entity - just look at the clubs in the top 3 tiers, and the areas they represent. Northern football reflects the general mindset within unionism of being happy in their own wee world and wanting as little as possible to do with the south. It's no accident that the international anthem and flag issue remains stubbornly unresolved.

    There are of course lots of coherent and sensible arguments against an AIL at the moment. But even if they were addressed, it would still face the fundamental barrier I've outlined above. So I just can't see this project going anywhere in reality.
    While there may be some who will object on the basis you outline, you obviously don't understand the make up of football in the North if you think that would be a major factor. Like with football everywhere, it will always boil down to money.

  11. #210
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oriel View Post
    Progressing in terms of more grounds improved almost all by grants, and that's fine.

    Standard of recent games I saw on tv and often some unfit looking players wouldn't back up progressing quality, nor would the 7-1 hammering Linfield took in the Unite Cup in November.

    The top of the table is tight, makes for competitive games, but not sure crowds are increasing to reflect that, think I read last year the biggest (on avg in 2019) attendances in NI were from Derry City, 3k, open to correction on this, but almost sure Linfield average just over 2k.
    More people attend football in the North per head of population than they do in the South. Also to compare like for like, you would need to drop the bottom 2 clubs from the NIFL to compare the attendances of two leagues of 10 teams.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Parker View Post
    While there may be some who will object on the basis you outline, you obviously don't understand the make up of football in the North if you think that would be a major factor. Like with football everywhere, it will always boil down to money.
    That may well be the case for the clubs themselves - but not the fans. And the fans own/run a number of clubs there, and have understandable influence at other clubs.

    Take Crusaders, who as a club have been pro the AIL concept (and with the smallest fan-base of Belfast's 4 main clubs, are usually quite open to new ways to generate income). As they're fan-owned, however, I suspect they would struggle to get approval to formally vote to back an AIL if such a vote were ever held. I can't see Linfield fans backing an AIL either, so it would be brave of their club to support one too if it ever came to it. Ballymena are another one in the same boat.

    Politics is never far from the surface in most things in NI. Including football. Again - just look at the nonsense re anthems and flags there at Internationals/Cup Finals. The IFA is happy to continue alienating half the population of NI with their stance on the international team, when they would create more revenue for themselves with a different approach (beyond an initial short-term backlash from the usual loyalists angry at any changes). Which proves that it isn't just about money at all.

    It's hard to deny that there really is an 'ourselves alone' mentality at play in the Irish League.
    Last edited by EatYerGreens; 30/01/2020 at 11:17 PM.

  13. #212
    Reserves A N Mouse's Avatar
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    Anyone that attended one of these events, as far as fans go were there many skeptics, or was it all choir?

    Ok seems they had some nice charts and graphs this time, but I'm not hearing anything to change my initial impression that it's all a pipe dream. Ollie feckin Byrne with two whole leagues:
    'if we can qualify regularly for CL group stages we're set'.
    Yeah, how we going to get there?
    'Money'
    where's the money going to come from?
    'Well I have a friend'
    And what if the money runs out before we reach the promised land?
    '...'

    Well here's the thing in order to get anywhere near regular CL group stages partipication we need to first get to stage were all our European representatives are competitive, that is could be expected to win through at least one round. Now despite what's regularly on the European thread we're a way off that. We've been hovering between two and three competitive teams for last decade. In order to get three and four teams we need some stability.

    Now the nifl has some stability, the same teams regularly qualifying for Europe helps the team coefficient, means seeding and 'easier' draws. Despite the ridicule about not taking europe seriously they're almost at two competitive teams, and is it this year they only have three teams so couple of results is bigger boost to country coefficient.

    A joint league were somehow 50% of teams compete in Europe might conceivably produce regular CL qualifiers, but it would be at the expense of the rest of the league. It would never produce eight competitive teams, as the kind of stability you need - five or six teams for four places over four or five years - would make for a boring league, and the much more likely scenario would be getting on for 16 teams for 8 places over 5 years. Why would anyone give up the status quo for that? And that's assuming some all euro places are kept.

  14. #213
    International Prospect outspoken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A N Mouse View Post
    Anyone that attended one of these events, as far as fans go were there many skeptics, or was it all choir?

    Ok seems they had some nice charts and graphs this time, but I'm not hearing anything to change my initial impression that it's all a pipe dream. Ollie feckin Byrne with two whole leagues:
    'if we can qualify regularly for CL group stages we're set'.
    Yeah, how we going to get there?
    'Money'
    where's the money going to come from?
    'Well I have a friend'
    And what if the money runs out before we reach the promised land?
    '...'

    Well here's the thing in order to get anywhere near regular CL group stages partipication we need to first get to stage were all our European representatives are competitive, that is could be expected to win through at least one round. Now despite what's regularly on the European thread we're a way off that. We've been hovering between two and three competitive teams for last decade. In order to get three and four teams we need some stability.

    Now the nifl has some stability, the same teams regularly qualifying for Europe helps the team coefficient, means seeding and 'easier' draws. Despite the ridicule about not taking europe seriously they're almost at two competitive teams, and is it this year they only have three teams so couple of results is bigger boost to country coefficient.

    A joint league were somehow 50% of teams compete in Europe might conceivably produce regular CL qualifiers, but it would be at the expense of the rest of the league. It would never produce eight competitive teams, as the kind of stability you need - five or six teams for four places over four or five years - would make for a boring league, and the much more likely scenario would be getting on for 16 teams for 8 places over 5 years. Why would anyone give up the status quo for that? And that's assuming some all euro places are kept.
    Was very few press at yesterday's event due to events at the FAI but he was most certainly challenged at times. I just left it feeling there's way too many moving parts still and that it's miles away from being something concrete.

  15. #214
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EatYerGreens View Post
    That may well be the case for the clubs themselves - but not the fans. And the fans own/run a number of clubs there, and have understandable influence at other clubs.

    Take Crusaders, who as a club have been pro the AIL concept (and with the smallest fan-base of Belfast's 4 main clubs, are usually quite open to new ways to generate income). As they're fan-owned, however, I suspect they would struggle to get approval to formally vote to back an AIL if such a vote were ever held. I can't see Linfield fans backing an AIL either, so it would be brave of their club to support one too if it ever came to it. Ballymena are another one in the same boat.

    Politics is never far from the surface in most things in NI. Including football. Again - just look at the nonsense re anthems and flags there at Internationals/Cup Finals. The IFA is happy to continue alienating half the population of NI with their stance on the international team, when they would create more revenue for themselves with a different approach (beyond an initial short-term backlash from the usual loyalists angry at any changes). Which proves that it isn't just about money at all.

    It's hard to deny that there really is an 'ourselves alone' mentality at play in the Irish League.
    I'll not go down the anthem debate route as that is something else entirely and would take us way off topic. Crusaders, well as you will no little about the personalities, I wouldn't assume the route that club follows.

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    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    The first article I have seen that doesn't just follow narrative fed to them.

    "And then, why, if there are broadcasters and partners queuing to support the idea, are there no hard facts, figures and documents to substantiate a notion that has, so far, been all about fantasy and idyllic outcomes?"

    Worth a read.

    https://www.dundalkdemocrat.ie/news/...OfoRII.twitter
    Last edited by Mr_Parker; 01/02/2020 at 6:58 AM.

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  18. #216
    Seasoned Pro Nesta99's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Parker View Post
    More people attend football in the North per head of population than they do in the South. Also to compare like for like, you would need to drop the bottom 2 clubs from the NIFL to compare the attendances of two leagues of 10 teams.
    Per head of population is a misdirection really - the Faroe Islands have the highest % of population that attend games at >10% of a 50k population. but that does not translate to very much, especially additional necessary resources. 3k at a game draws greater revenue than 2k irrespective of the 2k being even 100% of a population in attendance. Its a bit in the ball park of the old DUP mantra of 'The majority of the majority' as if that made any difference since it was still a minority!

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  20. #217
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Parker View Post
    Crusaders, well as you will no little about the personalities, I wouldn't assume the route that club follows.
    Yet you're more than happy to make such bold assumptions about what posters on here do or don't know. Which just makes you look a bit smug. For the record I am familiar with Mr Langhammer and some of the other 'personalities' at Crusaders. There are quite a few people on here who follow the Irish league closely and have a good handle on it all.

    That article you posted up includes a quote which supports the point I'm making. That the Crusaders fans run their club and are not as keen on an AIL as many of their administrators are:

    "A gathering, it was revealed, involving Crusaders supporters and Lucidís body took place in recent months and the general sentiment appeared to reject the AIL outwardly until the supposition for a split - involving a united division for one part of the year and then the return of the present system for the other - was tabled. They would, it was stated, be more interested if this were the case".

    Be careful what you presume about people you don't know.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nesta99 View Post
    Per head of population is a misdirection really - the Faroe Islands have the highest % of population that attend games at >10% of a 50k population. but that does not translate to very much, especially additional necessary resources. 3k at a game draws greater revenue than 2k irrespective of the 2k being even 100% of a population in attendance. Its a bit in the ball park of the old DUP mantra of 'The majority of the majority' as if that made any difference since it was still a minority!
    That's a good point. More people attend senior football proportionately in the north than in places like the US or China. It doesn't mean a damn thing though. There's still significantly more money in the game and bigger crowds in China and US than in NI. It's a pointless stat which at first glance sounds like it should mean something, when in reality it just reflects a small population.

  22. #219
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nesta99 View Post
    Per head of population is a misdirection really - the Faroe Islands have the highest % of population that attend games at >10% of a 50k population. but that does not translate to very much, especially additional necessary resources. 3k at a game draws greater revenue than 2k irrespective of the 2k being even 100% of a population in attendance. Its a bit in the ball park of the old DUP mantra of 'The majority of the majority' as if that made any difference since it was still a minority!
    Great ramble, but doesn't change the fact.

  23. #220
    First Team Mr_Parker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EatYerGreens View Post
    Yet you're more than happy to make such bold assumptions about what posters on here do or don't know. Which just makes you look a bit smug. For the record I am familiar with Mr Langhammer and some of the other 'personalities' at Crusaders. There are quite a few people on here who follow the Irish league closely and have a good handle on it all.

    That article you posted up includes a quote which supports the point I'm making. That the Crusaders fans run their club and are not as keen on an AIL as many of their administrators are:

    "A gathering, it was revealed, involving Crusaders supporters and Lucid’s body took place in recent months and the general sentiment appeared to reject the AIL outwardly until the supposition for a split - involving a united division for one part of the year and then the return of the present system for the other - was tabled. They would, it was stated, be more interested if this were the case".

    Be careful what you presume about people you don't know.
    Thanks for pointing out that in many ways the article backs up what I was saying. Crusaders put out an official statement post the 1st Dundalk meeting, that contradicts the fans position as outlined in that article.

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