Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 41

Thread: Foot.ie Q&A - Brian MacNeice - Answers

  1. #1
    Capped Player A face's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    15,395
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    302
    Thanked in
    196 Posts

    Foot.ie! Foot.ie Q&A - Brian MacNeice - Answers

    Here is a link to the questions thread

    ******************************


    1. Supporters and paying punters for eircom League games seem to be the biggest group of stakeholders in the Irish game but they were group that were consulted the least in the last reports, why was that?

    For the first phase of consultation we worked through the representative bodies as this was the most efficient way of getting their input. For example, we met with the players association, the league managers association, and the soccer writers association. I made contact with the National League Supporters Association (NLSA) at the outset and offered on numerous occasions to run a meeting with them. In the end they sent in a discussion document which we reviewed in detail and feed into the overall process.


    2. Why were attendance figures in the report lifted straight from www.European-Football-Statistics.co.uk without consultation with the person who collated the figures to gauge accuracy? I personally gathered those averages from fan guesstimates on foot.ie. I certainly wouldn't consider using them for such a major report; why then did you feel comfortable using the figures? Also, why was the source (indeed, no sources at all) not credited?

    In addition to this, all clubs are required by UEFA licensing (correct me if I'm wrong about that) to submit accurate attendance figures to the FAI on each match. Why did Genesis not get in touch with the FAI to access this information rather than use the above-mentioned rough guesstimates?


    Any information provided by clubs as part of the licensing scheme is confidential and therefore not available to us. However, we did verify the estimates of attendance figures with the league staff who were comfortable that they were an accurate estimate of the aggregate attendance figures based on the information they had.

    We also carried out a sense check of all of the other attendance estimates and we were happy that they were good estimates. The purpose of using these figures was to gauge where Ireland stands relative to other European leagues. It is clear from this that Ireland is low but a target of an average attendance of 4,000/5,000 would position the league on a par with the better performing second tier European leagues.

    That is what the top league in Ireland should be aiming for. The website sources that were used for some of the research on the report included www.football-research.org, www.European-football-statistics.co.uk, www.uefa.com, www.fifa.com, www.eurofootsie.com, www.worldstadiums.com and the various websites of the European football associations.


    3. The Genesis Report says eL attendances fall behind the Celtic League (424k) and the Heineken Cup (815k) (page 6). These figures are grossly inaccurate - the actual figures are 199k and 178k (if you count Ulster's games; source - www.ercrugby.com and ww.CelticLeague.com). Why was this very simple statistic, which is used to condemn the league, so wrong?

    The Heineken Cup and Celtic League attendances presented were aggregate figures for these competitions. It was not solely based on attendance levels for the Irish based clubs and we made that clear in the presentation when launching the report.

    The whole point of including these figures was to show how two leagues that did not exist 10 years ago have built a loyal and growing support base. These leagues form part of the competitive landscape within which the eircom League operates. The standards they have set, particularly the Heineken Cup, raise the bar considerably for the eircom League if it is to thrive in the future.


    4. You say you did not have access to detailed club accounts for your report (page 7). Why not? This would appear a major gap in the Report's source data. Are club accounts not being submitted to the FAI in accordance with UEFA Licensing? Were any other UEFA Licensing irregularities noted? (e.g. reporting of attendances) Do you believe the FAI is implementing UEFA Licensing properly, in light of subsequent financial troubles at Rovers, Waterford and Shels?

    As outlined above the accounts submitted by the clubs as part of the licensing process are done so on a confidential basis. We could not therefore review these without the consent of the clubs.

    We were however, able to get aggregate financial information on the state of the league and its clubs which shows that the league clubs generate an annual turnover of approximately €14m against an annual cost base of €17m! This is not sustainable and, as in any industry facing this situation, unless radical action is taken the inevitable result will be the end of many clubs. All of the clubs accepted this and they know better than anybody else that their current financial position is untenable.

    The FAI are determined to implement the UEFA club licensing scheme and our recommendations for the league will strengthen this position even further. However, the clubs must act responsibly as well and they must play their part too.


    5. Why was there no supporter consultation before the NLSA submitted - without being approached by Genesis - a document shortly before the deadline date? Were there plans in place to consult any eL Supporters' Clubs? Why was it not felt necessary to consult with them?

    See answer 1 above. It is entirely untrue to suggest that we did not approach the NLSA. On the contrary we made numerous attempts to have a meeting with them. We encouraged them to give their views and we made it very clear that we wanted to hear the views of all constituents within the game. The NLSA had every opportunity to avail of that opportunity.


    6. The Report states Ireland's UEFA ranking is 40th. Why was the huge improvement in the past two seasons not acknowledged? Last season, the league was 27th, and many feel the teams underachieved. 27th over a five-year span would see the eL champions gain a bye to the Second Qualifying Round of the Champions' League. This is also in line with your Vision for the League (page 13). This is surely now self-fulfilling?

    The ranking was the position as of the time of the report and still is. As you are probably aware the ranking is based on a 5 year period not a single season. It remains to be seen just how far up the rankings Ireland will go over the next few years. At the moment the following countries are below us (Albania, Armenia, Estonia, Malta, Wales, Northern Ireland, Azerbaijan, Luxembourg, Kazakhstan, Faroe Islands, Andorra, and San Marino).

    Should we be rejoicing in being ahead of any of these countries? I don’t think so. On the other hand there are a number of countries ahead of us that should not be. Are we less of a footballing nation than Belarus, Liechtenstein, Iceland, Macedonia, Lithuania, Georgia, Moldova, Lativia etc? No.

    Should their leagues be better than ours? No. Do we have less of a footballing heritage? No. Should we be aspiring to higher performance? Of course. Will we get there? I hope so and as you say performances are improving but it is by no means a slam dunk. Even if we do get to a lofty 27th we are only then getting back to something close to par performance and our aspirations should be much higher than that in my view.


    7. There is absolutely no reasoning behind the decision to support -
    1) A ten-team Premier 2) ground-sharing 3) that the FAI are best placed to promote the eircom League. Why not?


    The criteria used to evaluate the options on the league structure were:

    1. What is best for football in Ireland
    2. What will optimise the commercial potential of the league
    3. What will best support an improvement in the competitiveness of clubs in Europe
    4. What will provide high quality football and act as a showcase for the best of Irish football
    5. What will represent a new beginning for the league
    6. How will it be more attractive to encourage public and private investment
    7. What will provide a pinnacle for the development pathway for the game locally
    8. What will support the strengthening of the international team
    9. What will minimise the cost of participation for clubs
    10. What will provide an adequate geographic spread of league clubs

    Our view was that a 10 team league at the top was the best option to provide sufficient competition between teams, whilst ensuring the playing talent is concentrated in fewer clubs, it would allow a more focused facilities investment programme and have the potential to attract sufficient levels of support to make it viable for those operating in the top league. That is currently not the case in the existing structures.

    I saw that a previous contributor to the Q&A forum on foot.ie (the goalkeeper Stephen O’Brien) when asked about the proposal said “What is very disturbing is people are still talking about a 22 team league. The quantity of quality players is not here to have such a big league, the product is the most important thing if we are going to continually progress.”

    This was a view that was echoed in a lot of the consultation sessions we had around the clubs. However, I worry that the final decision will not go far enough and that something close to the status quo will be adopted going forward. This will not serve the league or the game in the long-term. The ground share issue is covered elsewhere in the responses.

    The FAI have shown in the last 18 months that they are far more capable of attracting support for the league commercially than the league had done up to now. The prize money available for the Setanta Cup and the level of TV coverage for league clubs secured is evidence of this.
    Last edited by A face; 11/04/2006 at 12:04 AM.
    The SFAI are the governing body for grassroots football in Ireland, not the FAI. Its success or the lack of is all down to them.

  2. #2
    Capped Player A face's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    15,395
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    302
    Thanked in
    196 Posts
    8. Do you honestly believe names found in Genesis Report page 18 (see below) would be taken seriously by the Irish public?

    • eircom Professional Super league
    • eircom Elite Irish League
    • eircom Ireland Super League
    • eircom Irish Premiership
    • eircom FAI Premiership.

    If you are to re-launch the league then I think it requires support in developing it is a brand. One aspect of developing the brand will be the name. There are numerous examples of leagues that have done this. Look at the success of football, rugby union, rugby league, cricket, even ice hockey in the UK at doing this. The re-branding will only be taken seriously if it is backed up by a fundamentally different proposition.

    That means all aspects need to be re-vamped including structure of the league, facilities, marketing, administration etc. However, in looking at options around names then the attributes that you want emphasised are the fact that it is an Irish league, is professional in attitude and delivery, it is new, it is different to what went before, it is high quality, and the best of what Irish football can offer.


    9. The Report recommends that a second consultation period be held (page 21). This was never held. Why not?

    A meeting was held as part of the launch of the report to obtain feedback and further input from those in attendance. The format of this ensured that everybody had an opportunity to give their views. That meeting was an open public meeting to which anybody was entitled to attend. An implementation group is now established to take the process forward. I don’t know if there are any further consultation sessions planned as part of that.


    10. What are your opinions on a league with clubs being cherry-picked based on geography, history, attendances, facilities, league position, etc.? In you opinion, is this consistent with the findings of the Genesis Report?

    For the league to be strong all aspects of the league need to be right. In my view these should be considerations for the league going forward. For example, if a club’s facilities are not up to scratch then this must be addressed before the gain entry into the league. If you don’t set standards then the league will never progress.

    This has happened elsewhere where clubs have won promotion on the field but have not been able to go up because they have not got the off-the-field set-up in place to support their participation in the league. I don’t call this cheery-picking I call it setting standards and raising the bar on performance across the board for all league clubs. And it is absolutely what is needed.


    11. From reading this forum and discussing the Report with various supporters, it would appear that a majority dismiss the Genesis Report as amateurish, poorly researched and irrelevant based on the above weaknesses. How do you counter these claims?

    See 2 above – the only criticism I have seen relates to the figures for attendances which were validated through a number of mechanisms.


    12. Why were anecdotal attendance figures used from the Internet but stated as fact.

    Again see 2 above - the figures were verified with league staff as being accurate estimates of attendances.


    13. The report seems to do reasonable job at stating what the current situation is but is very short on proposed changes. Why did Genesis not recommend a set of required changes? Surely some proposals were more worthy than others?

    The purpose of the report was to outline a strategic direction for the future of the eircom league. That is what it does. Within that there are 10 key recommendations. It is up to the FAI and the league to look at these and decide what will be implemented and how. Question 39 below seems to infer that in one persons view our recommendations are too radical.


    14. The report mentions how other sports are well marketed by their sponsors (Guinness, Heineken etc...) but never mentions how eircom fail to associate their products with the league

    I think that Guinness and Heineken are two good examples of sponsors that invest heavily in the products they sponsor. They put in as much, if not more, resource (both financial and physical) into supporting the sponsorship as they do in buying it in the first place. That is why they work so well and help build the profile of the events they are supporting. I believe that there is more that the league sponsor can do to help develop and support the product.


    15. 1 sponsor was contacted and although from the NLSA it's curious why no wider communication with fans

    I assume that should read supporter not sponsor. See above answers on this.


    16. Why did so few officials from the clubs participate?

    All clubs were invited to participate and give their views. We cannot force anybody to talk to us.


    17. You mention how extra funding is required but do not mention where this will come from or how much is required. How can the there be a plan without a budget?

    The report was a white paper outlining the strategic direction for the future of the league. I agree that this requires a detailed budget and plan to implement and that is exactly what is being developed now by the implementation group.


    18. Dublin ground sharing is mentioned an inevitable without explaining why this is the case...


    The government have made it very clear that they will not support multiple facilities in Dublin. The clubs themselves are not in a position to fund major improvements that would be required as a result of their precarious financial position. The government are prepared to support two stadia provided they are operated on a ground-sharing basis.

    Therefore, if you want to have modern, fit for purpose facilities on a par with what is being offered elsewhere then the only way this will happen in Dublin is if the clubs agree to ground share. As such therefore we are simply reflecting the stated government policy as communicated to us by the department officials.


    19. Did you investigate possibilities for municipal stadium sharing between other sports?

    No – we did not go into detail on options for stadia outside of the statement of fact about ground-sharing in Dublin.


    20. What yearly budget do Elite level clubs need to progress to the next level?

    I believe that the clubs annual budget should be tied to their ability to be able to generate turnover to service their costs. That is why we suggest setting a cap on the level of salaries which is linked to the level of turnover. The current scenario of some clubs operating with costs in excess of income is untenable.


    21. It is advocated that there should be two stadia in Dublin shared between the four 'big Dublin clubs'. The FAI have seemingly deemed that Pat's should move in with Rovers and that Shels should move in with Bohs. As an author of the Genesis report, what would your view be that the FAI are now trying to push Bohs into a corner by taking Shels in as co-owners of Dalymount Park for what amounts to a fraction of the value of the land? Have the FAI misinterpreted the Genesis Report?

    See 18 for my responses on ground sharing. I am not familiar with the specifics of the Bohs/Shels or Pats/Rovers situations to comment specifically on them.


    22. The first most fans heard about this Genesis report was when it was issued. How hard would it have been to set up an Internet questionnaire or have questions in all clubs programmes to gauge opinion? After all, as has been mentioned, we are the customers.

    See response to question 1 above.


    23. There should be a camera at EVERY premier game. Why was this not mentioned?

    I would like to see the grounds full first and then the cameras will have to follow!


    24. Those arguing in favour of groundsharing frequently cite the Genesis Report, and media who seek to frame groundsharing as a positive and even inevitable development repeatedly and uncritically refers it to. Did the report authors conduct any primary (original) research in the target market or audience?

    No. To understand the reasoning behind the ground sharing concept see 18 above.


    25. On what basis should Dublin clubs be required to ground share, when provincial clubs with much smaller followings and catchment areas are to be encouraged to develop their own stadia?

    I believe that there should be a discreet number of stadia targeted for significant improvements across the country. It is impossible to invest in every ground. The Dublin ground share issue is covered adequately above (question 18).


    26. Football is the biggest participation sport in the country, according to the FAI. Yet, for political, cultural and historical reasons, it is one of the worst resourced. Should the Government consider current national participation rates in major sports when it determines relative allocations of funding in grants, subsidies and tax breaks?

    Yes I believe they should. Football is the biggest participation sport and its contribution to Irish society is enormous. That said, I believe sport is significantly under-invested across the board and this should be addressed urgently. For example, the level of investment by the Government in the UK in sport is increasing significantly and this will be further emphasised with the awarding of the Olympics to London in 2012.
    Last edited by A face; 10/04/2006 at 11:49 PM.
    The SFAI are the governing body for grassroots football in Ireland, not the FAI. Its success or the lack of is all down to them.

  3. #3
    Capped Player A face's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    15,395
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    302
    Thanked in
    196 Posts
    27. Irish football is a sport largely based on local and regional loyalties. Where are the Genesis authors from, and what Irish teams do they support?

    Dublin, Belfast, Glasgow and New Zealand! Raheny United Schoolboys.
    The thing I find interesting is that there is no formal link between the local club and any league club. Why not? What better time to build loyalty to a club than when the kids start playing football themselves for the first time. Every schoolboy club in the country should be linked/affiliated in some way to a league club. The clubs should be making a conscious effort to reach kids in these clubs.


    28. The Genesis Report recommends ground sharing for Dublin clubs. Given that the clubs in question already struggle to draw support from their independent catchment areas, do you not think it would be detrimental to these clubs' chances of drawing a sizeable or even similar support while overlapping the same catchment area?

    No. If the level of facilities and the match-day experience is significantly enhanced by moving to fit for purpose stadia then it will have the opposite effect. Ground sharing is emotive but there are plenty of examples across the world where it works.

    The key is that if the facilities are improved it will act as an incentive to attract a wider audience. How many people would hand over heart say they would encourage their wives, girlfriends, kids to come to most of the league grounds in the country? Very few if any.

    All you have to do is look at the impact a targeted investment programme in the upgrading of facilities has had for the greyhound industry. It has opened the sport up to a whole new market and made it much more attractive.


    29. Do you agree with the new league proposal to select teams for the 2007 premier division based on location, marketability and other factors as opposed to pure promotion and relegation? Was this proposal a part of your report?

    See 10 above.


    30. Who is Limerick City? Two of their directors were apparently consulted.

    Apologies to all those associated with Limerick FC!!


    31. Were the clubs co-operative in the report?

    In the main yes.


    32. Why was an All Ireland League not fully investigated?

    Because of the political implications and the need to involve the IFA, UEFA and the relevant government parties. However, we made it very clear that the principle of an All Ireland League is something that should be explored with these stakeholders. I believe it would provide the game on the island with a significant boost. Also, the experience of the Setanta Cup shows that it can be done.


    33. How can the report be justified as representative if the fans were not consulted? The Star were able to hold "Fans Forums" round the country, why was Genesis not?

    See various replies above.


    34. What the reason behind giving Galway fans a presentation on the report, but rejecting an NLSA request for an open forum?

    We did the presentation in Galway because they asked and we were available. Subsequently we were asked to repeat the exercise at all clubs. We made it clear to the NLSA that we would be prepared to do one or two similar presentations if they wanted them but we were not able to go to every club for obvious practical reasons.


    35. Given the choice, which do you think would be better for the league; For the FAI and Government to help fund one 10,000 seater stadium or two 5,000-seater stadia?

    If the question relates to the Dublin situation – two 10,000 seater stadia with modern facilities that will enhance the experience for potential supporters and allow the clubs offer a new and better experience to those attending league games.


    36. Why should a well run club, with a moderately successful team which has attained Premier Division status on merit, no serious financial issues be excluded from the Premier Division run by the FAI merely because it is located in Dublin and not in some provincial centre with no great tradition of supporting soccer and a poor quality team?

    If the question is should criteria be applied to determine fitness for participation in the top league then the answer is yes. Given the current state of the league and the clubs it is apparent that the clubs will not voluntarily apply the standards without having to.

    So if it really is a well run club (in all aspects of its operations) and is successful on the pitch then there will nothing to stop it from progressing.


    37. Quoted below (in italics) is the rationale presented by you underpinning your very specific call for ground sharing.

    This striking call is repeatedly cited by media and has become the basis for FAI and Irish Government strategy that appears set to determine the fate of a number of historic clubs and guide the direction of millions of euros in public investment.


    It runs to 150 words.

    -----------------------------
    There is a need for considerable investment in facilities in all league clubs. However, investment should be prioritised on the clubs with clear strategic plans and planned outcomes. Investment in facilities should be prioritised in top National league clubs and/or clubs serving large population centres. The facilities investment should include provision to ensure high standards of:

    • Floodlights
    • Playing surface
    • Training
    • TV and media provision
    • Family friendly facilities
    • Seating
    • Toilet and other facilities
    • Catering/hospitality
    Ultimately, the planned programme of investment in facilities should deliver a range of high quality, family friendly stadia and clubs across the main population centres and strongholds of football throughout the country. The facilities should be equipped to support the clubs in providing revenues outside match days.

    It is inevitable that Dublin clubs will be encouraged to consider ground sharing if they are to attract significant public funds for investment.

    -----------------------------

    Do you consider that this passage represents an adequate analysis on which to base strategic decisions?

    The line on ground-sharing is a statement of fact. It comes from the government and department officials telling us as part of the consultation process that they would only support major developments for football stadia in Dublin if the clubs agreed to ground share.

    Therefore, the “striking call” is not a basis upon which government and FAI strategy is formulated. On the contrary it reflects an already formulated policy on behalf of government and therefore a reality that the clubs must face if they want public funds to support developments for stadia in Dublin.


    38. On what basis do you say it 'inevitable' that Dublin football clubs uniquely should ground-share as a prerequisite to receiving significant public funds, when this prerequisite has never applied to provincial clubs, nor to other codes, receiving state support?

    As outlined above, it is Government policy and as such is a statement of fact.


    39. When consultants are engaged in a high-profile study concerning public policy, what safeguards exist to counter the in-built temptation to favour spectacular recommendations that can be packaged as 'radical', 'innovative' or 'dynamic', rather than gradualist approaches that seek to enhance existing strengths in traditional clubs?

    In this situation unless radical change takes place the league will not survive. We have no interest in creating headlines for the sake of it. I am a firm believer in the principle if it ain’t broke don’t fix it but that simply is not the case with the league currently. Question 13 above seems to suggest we didn’t make recommendations re changes at all (radical or otherwise)!
    The SFAI are the governing body for grassroots football in Ireland, not the FAI. Its success or the lack of is all down to them.

  4. #4
    Capped Player A face's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    15,395
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    302
    Thanked in
    196 Posts
    40. Are there any plans to publish the first two genesis reports? This would allow us 'stakeholders' to judge the FAI's progress for ourselves.

    I don’t know – it is not our decision.


    41. On the subject of the first two Genesis Reports – my understanding is that they called for an external person with business experience to come in as CEO of the FAI. This didn’t happen. Do you think the FAI implemented the first two reports? Do you think, given the serious weaknesses highlighted in the eircom League Report, that people are entitled to assume the first two reports were just as poor?

    I assume that you have not actually read the original Genesis report and are operating off comments in the public domain. We were not specific about who should be the CEO of the FAI. Also, in case you missed it the previous CEO of the FAI was an external person with business experience!

    We have no role to play in the selection of a CEO for the FAI. However, the key for the FAI is to have the right person in the CEO role with the appropriate skills to do the job. The current CEO not only has the experience of running a very successful business but is strongly rooted in the game and in my view for what its worth has all the skills required to carry out the role.
    I believe that the FAI has implemented the original Genesis report. It took a little time for some of the changes to be embraced but the organisation is a very different and stronger one now than it was at the time of the original report.

    In my view a line should be drawn in the sand and everybody should move on and stop referring back to the Genesis Report – it is time to drive forward and for all parts of the game to work together to make football in Ireland a strong, successful sport at all levels.

    Finally, I don’t accept there are serious weaknesses in the report and I think the result of the changes in the FAI since the original report speak for themselves.


    42. I haven’t read the report, so could someone please correct me if I’m off here. The impression I’m under is that the report wants no more than four clubs from Dublin. Given Dublin has around one third of the population of the country, how is this justified?

    I would recommend you read the report and then I would be happy to answer any questions you have. I think 43 below answers your specific question.


    43. The report mentions “population centres”, though doesn’t specify any particular amount of Dublin clubs that I can see.

    I assume this is an answer for 42 rather than a question in its own right.


    44. How do you reconcile your recommendation of ground sharing for Dublin clubs with the stated need for clubs to integrate into their communities? Surely (for example) moving Pats from their community in Inchicore a considerable distance to Tallaght will destroy their grounding in their local area.

    The two are not necessarily connected. In the case of St Pats it provides them with an opportunity to build on the strength of their links in the Inchicore area and introduce the club to a potentially new support base.

    There is nothing that will prevent the club from continuing to have a strong identity and presence in Inchicore. I would love to see all of the clubs actively working in the schools, clubs and other community outlets to build a much closer link to the club and their area.
    The SFAI are the governing body for grassroots football in Ireland, not the FAI. Its success or the lack of is all down to them.

  5. #5
    Director dahamsta's Avatar
    Joined
    May 2001
    Location
    The Internet
    Posts
    13,484
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    278
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    654
    Thanked in
    407 Posts
    Another cracker face, well done. Thanks to Brian for taking the time to respond so thoroughly, and of course everyone that asked questions.

    [Point of order, Q37 seems a wee bit borked, hard to delineate between the Q and the A.]

  6. #6
    Capped Player A face's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Paradise
    Posts
    15,395
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    302
    Thanked in
    196 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by dahamsta
    [Point of order, Q37 seems a wee bit borked, hard to delineate between the Q and the A.]
    Its the way the question was posed ... basically the media seeing something in black and white and referring to it as gospel, its answered well here but it still doesn't address the way some papers were using it and other 'facts' at the time, banding it about all over the place.
    The SFAI are the governing body for grassroots football in Ireland, not the FAI. Its success or the lack of is all down to them.

  7. #7
    Youth Team
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Posts
    216
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    1. Supporters and paying punters for eircom League games seem to be the biggest group of stakeholders in the Irish game but they were group that were consulted the least in the last reports, why was that?

    For the first phase of consultation we worked through the representative bodies as this was the most efficient way of getting their input. For example, we met with the players association, the league managers association, and the soccer writers association. I made contact with the National League Supporters Association (NLSA) at the outset and offered on numerous occasions to run a meeting with them. In the end they sent in a discussion document which we reviewed in detail and feed into the overall process.
    good question, better answer - whats the point of a supports group who claim a mandate they have not been given, in the light of the fact that they failed to step up when asked for opinion

  8. #8
    Coach Poor Student's Avatar
    Joined
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Dublin
    Posts
    7,921
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    196
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    68
    Thanked in
    40 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by green-blood
    good question, better answer - whats the point of a supports group who claim a mandate they have not been given, in the light of the fact that they failed to step up when asked for opinion
    How about allowing an NLSA member to offer a reply to that first? To the best of my knowledge the NLSA asked to hold forums with them in a few places something like Cork, Derry, Dublin, Galway and Genesis said they didn't have time, they then said just Dublin and they still refused.

    First of all, great work Face, an excellent coup for foot.ie. Secondly, fair play to MacNeice for answering all the questions fairly rapidly. I don't agree with some answers and I am a bit confused by his claim he tried to meet the NLSA but at least he faced tough questions and answered them. I think he is being particularly like a politician when confronted by the alleged criteria based on history, fanbase and geography. He keeps focusing on stadium criteria which is quite quantifiable and the most logical, therefore making the whole lot of them sound reasonable without ever addressing the more dubious subjective ones. Also, he mentions how great it would be for clubs to link up with local school clubs. UCD do that with Mount Merrion and give them free tickets. He also makes the attendances figures sound correlated from a number of sources. At the end of the day they're the exact figures that are compiled and lifted from guesstimes here, though at least he says they consulted the FAI about their accuracy.
    Last edited by A face; 11/04/2006 at 12:34 PM.

  9. #9
    Godless Commie Scum
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Co Wickla
    Posts
    11,414
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    137
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    650
    Thanked in
    433 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Poor Student
    He also makes the attendances figures sound correlated from a number of sources. At the end of the day they're the exact figures that are compiled and lifted from guesstimes here, though at least he says they consulted the FAI about their accuracy.
    Probably checked several websites, that also used the figures from here Although probably more worrying that the FAI chose to validate them...

    imo the answers here lead to more questions on Genisis than giving answers, but credit for answering them anyway.
    If you attack me with stupidity, I'll be forced to defend myself with sarcasm.

  10. #10
    First Team
    Joined
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,435
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    23
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    12
    Thanked in
    9 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by A face


    The line on ground-sharing is a statement of fact. It comes from the government and department officials telling us as part of the consultation process that they would only support major developments for football stadia in Dublin if the clubs agreed to ground share.

    Therefore, the “striking call” is not a basis upon which government and FAI strategy is formulated. On the contrary it reflects an already formulated policy on behalf of government and therefore a reality that the clubs must face if they want public funds to support developments for stadia in Dublin.


    38. On what basis do you say it 'inevitable' that Dublin football clubs uniquely should ground-share as a prerequisite to receiving significant public funds, when this prerequisite has never applied to provincial clubs, nor to other codes, receiving state support?

    As outlined above, it is Government policy and as such is a statement of fact.
    Interesting!

  11. #11
    Now with extra sauce! Dodge's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Insomnia
    Posts
    23,575
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    663
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    2,674
    Thanked in
    1,453 Posts
    Can't beleive he used figures from another coountry when compariing us to the rugby. If thats the case lump us in with Scottish Football League and we're doing well...
    54,321 sold - wws will never die - ***
    ---
    New blog if anyone's interested - http://loihistory.wordpress.com/
    LOI section on balls.ie - http://balls.ie/league-of-ireland/

  12. #12
    Coach tiktok's Avatar
    Joined
    Feb 2003
    Location
    In Out Shake it all about
    Posts
    5,630
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    20
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    6
    Thanked in
    5 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Dodge
    Can't beleive he used figures from another coountry when compariing us to the rugby. If thats the case lump us in with Scottish Football League and we're doing well...
    That's what jumped out at me too Dodge.
    Not comparing like with like at all.

    Well done A Face.

    I'd like to get an official reponse from the NLSA, because I was under the impression that the document they issued in response to the Genesis Report was because they had NOT been consulted in the process.

    Also, McNeice says he tried to make (and made) contact the NLSA. There are a number of high profile supporters groups in the country e,g, the 400 club at Rovers, if he was serious about getting the ideas of supporters, he should have been making efforts to talk to these groups too.
    Cork City: Making 'Dream Team' seem realistic since 2007.

  13. #13
    Capped Player
    Joined
    May 2004
    Posts
    16,892
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    5,555
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    3,676
    Thanked in
    2,093 Posts
    By & large I think these are fair answers from Genesis and at the outset I tended to agree with the report.

    I noted at the time the Stephen O'Brien interview on foot.ie and agreed entirely with his view that the league would be better off with fewer teams, each with more good players. So I totally agree with Genesis in this regard.

    I also totally agree with the problem of lack of linkage between senior football and junior & schoolboy football.

    Also, please correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Genesis said that it was only "preferable" not to have the league dominated by Dublin clubs, something I'd agree with. However, the report didn't recommend that there be any formal limit placed on the participation of Dublin clubs. Is this the case?

  14. #14
    First Team BohDiddley's Avatar
    Joined
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Bohs
    Posts
    2,087
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    Well done A Face!
    For me, the most interesting response here is that Genesis emphatically are disowning responsibility for ground-sharing. They say it reflects government policy that a maximum two stadia in Dublin should be supported (although they might have stated that in the report). And they make no attempt to defend that policy. Yet Genesis is repeatedly cited, at least by media, as the source for this pearl of wisdom, and it is at least indirectly invoked by FAI and others who support 'radical' change.
    I'd love to know where this is stated as goverment policy, and I would love to know who is politically responsible for it. This arbitrary decision to limit four (principal) clubs to two stadia is, more than any single other consideration, responsible for holding up the development of realistic public investment in football on this island.

  15. #15
    Banned
    Joined
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    2,834
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    On the NLSA issue he is wrong. We did not ask them to do a meeting with every club, somebody else might have asked but it wasnt the NLSA.

    However after the Galway meeting we asked if they could repeat that again and they ignored us. His claims that they tried to contact us on "numerous" occasions is also wrong and there is evidence of all the above.

    Sorry to disappoint you green blood. Again if you have anything constructive to contribute we would be glad to hear your views but the constant undermining is getting old.

    I asked question 23 and his answer beggars belief. So we should wait til the grounds are full to have cameras at them?? Is that the criteria?

    Interesting that he took the time to answer questions here but didnt reply to our invites.

    KOH

  16. #16
    Biased against YOUR club pineapple stu's Avatar
    Joined
    Aug 2002
    Location
    In the long grass
    Posts
    29,800
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    1,284
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    2,505
    Thanked in
    1,556 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by tiktok
    I'd like to get an official reponse from the NLSA, because I was under the impression that the document they issued in response to the Genesis Report was because they had NOT been consulted in the process.
    What nyhoop has said is broadly what happened. We'll hopefully refute Genesis' claims tomorrow though (just need to get hold of a couple of items).

    Some hugely interesting issues here though!
    • The FAI commissioned them to do a report but withheld information from them. Club accounts are not confidential as McNeice claims - in fact, you are within your rights to go to the registered office and ask for a set of accounts (for companies anyway; not sure what the situation is with regards partnerships, etc).
    • They freely admit comparing the eircom League's attendances to the entire of the Heineken Cup - Italian, Scottish, English, Welsh and French teams included - and see no problems with this.
    • McNeice skipped a fair few questions. The issue of plagiarism was never addressed. The issue of selecting clubs on the grounds of marketability or attendances was never addressed.
    • The notion that cameras should only be at grounds once they are full on a regular basis beggard belief. How the hell are clubs supposed to get media exposure to fill their grounds without cameras?!
    • He doesn't explain why no other Supporters' Clubs were consulted.


    All in all, there's nothing there that sways my view that the report was anything other than shoddy and unprofessional.

    Still, fair dues face for organising the interview! Now let's see if we can get Bob Breen back!

  17. #17
    Director dahamsta's Avatar
    Joined
    May 2001
    Location
    The Internet
    Posts
    13,484
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    278
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    654
    Thanked in
    407 Posts
    Just to nip this in the bud: I don't want to see this thread develop into a flame war. Keep it impersonal, and I don't want to see claims and counter-claims without evidence. These Q&As are increasingly important to Foot.ie, I won't see them diluted or tainted by trolls and flame-warriors. Any attempts to do so will result in deletions and suspensions.

    adam

  18. #18
    Reserves
    Joined
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    382
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    7
    Thanked in
    2 Posts
    Having had a variety of laughable experiences with consultants, I would take what these guys say with a pillar of salt. The bottom line for me is that most clubs are very badly run and as long as that is tolerated the EL simply cannot progress.
    For example, comparing rugby's European Cup (REC) attendances to EL attendances is a nonsense as they're not comparing like with like: they are very different competitions, with provinces (rather than clubs) representing Ireland in the REC, while the competition is spread across Ireland, Britain and France while the EL isn't even an all-Ireland league.
    And as for his response viz groundsharing: behind the government's frock is a rather convenient hiding place.
    The older I get, the more I realise that what's required to get people to to the top is also what prevents them from making a difference once they get there.

  19. #19
    First Team WeAreRovers's Avatar
    Joined
    May 2002
    Posts
    1,833
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    6
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    35
    Thanked in
    17 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by tiktok

    I'd like to get an official reponse from the NLSA
    An official response? From an ad-hoc, unrepresentative group? Don't see the relevance. The NLSA don't represent anyone at Rovers.

    As you pointed out yourself, Rovers is owned and run by the supporters - that's who Genesis should have talked to. Not the NLSA, at least certainly not on our behalf.

    KOH
    No One Likes Us, We Don't Care

  20. #20
    First Team Bald Student's Avatar
    Joined
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    1,824
    Thanks Thanks Given 
    0
    Thanks Thanks Received 
    0
    Thanked in
    0 Posts
    There are two seperate issues relating to the NLSA in the answers. The first, Q5, is that "It is entirely untrue to suggest that we did not approach the NLSA. On the contrary we made numerous attempts to have a meeting with them.".

    This was before I was on the committee but I spoke to the person involved today and he confirmed that what Genesis said is true. They twice spoke to the NLSA and the NLSA tried to organise a meeting but not enough people were interested to make the meeting worthwhile. Instead, the poeple involved drew up a document and presented it to Genesis. Wheather Genesis could have contected for themselves other supporters' groups is a seperate issue but I think they delt fairly with the NLSA on this issue.



    The second point is in Q34 where Genesis say, 'We made it clear to the NLSA that we would be prepared to do one or two similar presentations if they wanted them but we were not able to go to every club for obvious practical reasons.'.

    I was personally involved with this issue and what Genesis said is not true. We asked Genesis would it be possible to give a presentation similar to the one in Galway to supporters' of other clubs. Genesis made it clear that they couldn't give 21 other presentations (which we of course understand) and we said that 'what we had in mind was a single meeting for supporters in Dublin and possibly one in Cork or the North-west'. I never received a reply from Genesis to that request or to subsequent contact. They did not refuse anything, they simply did not reply to my e-mails. At this point I asked the FAI if Genesis were still involved (i.e. should I leave them alone) and they told me that Genesis were no longer involved so I let the issue drop.

    At no point did Genesis make it clear to the NLSA that they would be prepared to do one or two similar presentations to the one in Galway if we wanted.

    As I was personally involved in the second issue above I have copies of e-mails to confirm everything I have said (with the exception of the question to the FAI which took place verbally).


    John Craddock,
    Secretary, NLSA
    Last edited by Bald Student; 11/04/2006 at 4:14 PM. Reason: spelling

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Foot.ie Q&A – Eoin Hand - Answers
    By A face in forum Premier & First Divisions
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 16/06/2010, 3:54 PM
  2. Foot.ie Q&A - Noel Mooney - Answers
    By A face in forum Premier & First Divisions
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 28/10/2007, 11:31 AM
  3. Foot.ie Q&A Session - Stephen O'Brien - Answers
    By A face in forum Premier & First Divisions
    Replies: 33
    Last Post: 16/11/2006, 9:55 AM
  4. Foot.ie Q&A - Brian MacNeice - Questions
    By A face in forum Premier & First Divisions
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 03/04/2006, 2:47 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •