herald

Friday 24 November 2017

Show me the money: An idiot's guide to shamateurism in GAA

INVADERS from Mars - or the IMF - may have been bemused this week to see the Irish media full of stories about whether Jee-Ay-Ay Managers should be paid.

"Sure, hasn't this been happening for 20 years? Why all the fuss?" they will wonder.

Still, for the benefit of all you philistines who reckon the last Irish volunteer died in 1916, or for those who can't understand the difference between "remuneration" and "reimbursement" especially if it means "Revenue" is hovering, here is Curve Ball's Idiot Proof Guide To Amateur Status In the GAA.

(Editor: Please note, this is a discussion paper only, and any hair-brained opinions contained therein have nothing to do with me.)

AMATEURISM

A noble Corinthian ideal that once-upon-a-time prevailed in rugby, athletics, Friday night darts in your local boozer ... until the scourge of creeping professionalism left only one sporting organisation standing tall and proud.

THE 'GAAAG'

Not to be mistaken for a very long joke, this stands for the "Greatest Amateur Association Anywhere on the Globe" -- a description uttered without a hint of irony by, among others, quite a few full-time officials of said organisation.

SHAMATEURISM

Repeating the above boast about your own county while simultaneously appointing an 'outside' manager with a reputation for, ahem, driving very fast and expensive cars to training.

FR TED DOCTRINE

Aka "It was only resting in my account". This time-honoured excuse should be tried by any manager who is paid a visit by a set of eagle-eyed Revenue auditors.

UNDER-THE-COUNTER PAYMENTS

Anything that is murky, covert, not above-board and certainly not for the attention of aforementioned Revenue auditors.

OVER-THE-COUNTER PAYMENTS

Not applicable to any GAA dictionary, unless you are referring to the outlandish prices charged for warm Fanta, Curly Wurly Bars, Tayto or melting Choc Ices at assorted county grounds.

COUNTY BOARD MANTRA

Invariably repeated by your county board chairman in response to some awkward question about the payment of managers in the GAA. It goes as follows: "I know for a fact that my county has never, ever, paid a manager anything other than his legitimate expenses. Now, off the record, I understand that our dear neighbours down the road have been paying 50 grand to (submit name as appropriate) for the last five years, and they've won diddly-squat with him, bigger fools!"

LEGITIMATE EXPENSES

Mileage, phone bills, psychiatric fees for all post-championship counselling, and Supermacs on the way home from training.

ILLEGITIMATE EXPENSES

The submission of receipts for all manner of nebulous expenses ranging from a new wig (pulling your hair out is a common managerial affliction) to unexpected childcare costs in your adopted county.

Promoted articles

Entertainment News