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McHale: players are going crazy

Liam McHale says club players are finding it difficult right now, and suggests that the GAA make allowances for small groups to safely train together

Liam McHale explains how difficult clubs players are finding it right now, and suggests that the GAA should make allowances for small groups to safely train together.

BY SHANE STAPLETON
Liam McHale says he would like to see players allowed back in training groups of four or six.

The GAA have suspended games activity since the outbreak of Covid-19, and all facilities are currently closed to the public.

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The former Mayo star is the current manager of Athlone’s football team, and feels the players should be trusted to train responsibly in small groups.

“A lot of guys are going crazy now,” McHale exclusively tells OurGame. “The first month or six weeks, I found from talking to people, were okay.

“They have their programmes — both club and county players all have their programmes now — and everybody was doing their thing, out on their bikes, doing their runs.

“But they’re missing that teamwork now and that comradeship and getting together two or three nights per week — playing games and that social aspect as well, they’re really missing it.

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“I would love to see guys getting back in groups of four or six, maintaining that social distancing and being careful…

“I think Pat Spillane said it, about getting back on the GAA grounds and start kicking a ball around and doing some drills.

“If they championship start, you’d imagine it will be club first and these players would like to be ready and ready to play at short notice.”

The GAA’s Advisory Group met on Tuesday night and director general Tom Ryan gave an update on the association’s roadmap to return, which was sparse on details.

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Ryan says: “It’s important that we get back to using our facilities for those purposes as well. But it has to be done in a controlled way.

“And it has to be done in a safe way. The over-riding thing all the time is safety.

“That little group is going to help us with regard to how we might tackle that and how we might embark upon that.”

Stay tuned for part two of the Liam McHale interview which will be released soon, discussing his Mayo career and his much-celebrated basketball career.

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