Burns hits back at 'absolutely crazy' Cavanagh claim

May 14, 2024

A view of GAAGO microphones ahead of the All-Ireland SFC quarter-finals at Croke Park ©INPHO/Ben Brady

Jarlath Burns has dismissed Sean Cavanagh’s claim that the GAA is ‘one of the richest organisations in the world’ as ‘absolutely crazy’.

The GAA president also rubbished Cavanagh’s suggestion that the Association is putting bigger games on GAAGO to maximise profit. The Tyrone great said on The Saturday Game on RTÉ: “For me, there is a suspicion that the GAA is using GAAGO as a vehicle to maximise more revenue and more profit. That's wrong, it's driving profit off normal GAA people.

“As long as GAAGO is a profit-making organisation, there will always be suspicions that they are putting those best games behind the paywall. The money is 50/50, 50 per cent RTÉ and 50 per cent GAA - the GAA is profit making out of this vehicle, it is being used as a subsidy.

“The GAA are one of the richest organisations in the world. If anything, they should be saying for the big games 'we will show them to everyone, we will find a way."

But speaking on RTÉ1 yesterday, Burns hit back by saying: “That's a superficial and emotional comment that doesn't take into account the complexities of the logistics that we have to deal with in the real world.

“Sean Cavanagh on Saturday night on live TV, and he is an accountant at an accountancy practice, said that the GAA is one of the richest organisations in the world.

“We have €140million of a turnover, of which we give back 83 per cent to our own members, counties, and clubs.

“For someone to make that comment live on The Saturday Game, considering the business that he is in, is just absolutely crazy. The only place we can get (money) from is with the selling of our games. GAAGO is a very small part of that.

“I will make no apologies for saying that I want GAAGO to become a major revenue generator for our Association, because we need that money to upgrade our facilities.”

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