Billy Joe Padden believes introducing the mark will lead to more defensive football

Speaking on 'Off the Ball' on Sunday, Padden was clear that it was not going to have the desired effect on the flow of the game

Billy Joe Padden, Off the Ball, GAA congress,

Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

After an eventful two days at the GAA Annual Congress across Friday and Saturday, there were a number of motions which passed and a number which didn't, which have raised a number of talking points. 

Speaking to Joe Molloy on Off The Ball on Sunday, Billy Joe Padden covered the big motions that had been passed and those that hadn't made the cut at the Mount Wolseley Hotel in Co. Carlow.

Discussing the decision to not make any adjustments to the calendar to prevent burnout, Padden stated that he found it very strange that didn't get the two-thirds majority it needed.

He added that  perhaps the delegates were concerned that there were a number of other factors in play and that moving the dates of the All-Ireland finals would involve a number of moving pieces.

Image: ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne

"There is no real desire to change it there," said Padden. "I feel for Paraic Duffy, I think probably in the long run he would make further changes and just saw this as a first step.

"I think they really are letting club players down. It's the inter-county game that probably generates all the revenue for the county boards and the provincial councils, but I think that the GAA, as an organisation, will probably have to forget about money for the minute and concentrate on making the quality of the games at all levels as good as they can.

"I think each county board delegate is doing a disservice to the club players in their county who, at the same time, are the supporters and key components of the GAA community throughout Ireland"

The other big talking point to emerge from the congress was the introduction of the mark, one that has been met with a mixed reaction from players, while Dublin manager Jim Gavin has spoken in favour of it

Image: ©INPHO/Andrew Paton

"Look," said Padden, "I think that it's another example of, like the black card, we are unhappy with the way the game is being played, and we think that this will be a solution to teams playing blanket defence or anything like that. I don't see it.

"To me if you want to change the way the game is being played, and you think that you want to being a high fielding skill back into it, maybe give somebody a mark in an attacking position, that way you're going to incentivise players to actually kick the ball into the attacking third". 

While the move might have been made with the idea of helping attacking players, Padden argued that "winning a mark, taking three or four steps back from it, all it's doing is giving other payers time to get back into a defensive area and get 10 or 12 bodies behind the ball".