Christy Cooney listed ‘player welfare’ as the fifth and final item on his agenda after being installed as new GAA President on Leeside on Saturday.
The Youghal clubman comes into the job at a time when official recognition of the GPA by Croke Park was something Nickey Brennan was unable to sort out (basically because the players’ body wanted a percentage of the association’s income), and against the embarrassing backdrop of his own proximity to the goings on at FÁS. (He was assistant director-general to head honcho Rody Molloy until his resignation amid a spending/perks scandal late last year.)
The cost to the Association of Cooney’s presidency will include €158,000 per annum in salary secondment, plus additional pension contributions, a car and expenses. Spread over a three-year term that’s a lot of jam at a time when it’s increasingly hard to keep players sweet.