Leagues to be completed before championships start
GAA Meath's relegation to Div 2 confirmed
Meath's hopes to have the NFL season declared null and void and get another crack at Div 1 in 2021 were dashed this afternoon as the GAA confirmed arrangements for their inter-county competitions.
After losing their first five games Meath were already doomed to relegation, but the suspension of all activities due to Covid-19 gave hope to them avoiding the drop.
However the Central Competitions Control Committee (CCCC) have recommended that the final two rounds of the football leagues be completed on 17th and 24th October, before the start of the championships. There will be no league finals this year with the table toppers after the seven games declared winners.
When the leagues are completed the football championships will quickly get underway as a straight knockout competition for the first time since 2000, so there will be no second chances.
Meath will play Wexford or Wicklow in the Leinster SFC and the winners of that game will find out their semi-final opponents when the draws are done later on this evening.
The Joe McDonagh cup will remain as a round-robin competition, so Meath can look forward to games against Antrim, Carlow, Kerry and Westmeath.
The McDonagh Cup final will be played as a curtainraiser to the All-Ireland SHC final on Sunday 13th December and the winners will earn a place in the Liam MacCarthy Cup for 2021. The All-Ireland SFC final fixed for Saturday 19th December.
Competition regulations dealing with venues, promotion/relegation and dates for games have yet to be finalised and will be finalised by the CCCC in the coming weeks.
Games in provincial championships will be week on week in many cases and all games, even the All-Ireland finals must finish on the day with extra-time and penalties to be to decide games that finish level.
There will be no Junior Football Championship this year and the provincial and All-Ireland Club championships have also been cancelled.
The minor football and hurling championships will be straight knockout competitions with the four provincial football champions facing off in All-Ireland semi-finals.
For second level schools the CCCC has recommended that competitions should be completed to provincial final stage only, there will be no All-Ireland series at any level.
The draws that were made for the early rounds of the football championship will remain and will be played as a knockout competition.
Preliminary round - Carlow v Offaly, Wexford v Wicklow, Louth v Longford; quarter-finals - Carlow/Offaly v Kildare, Wexford/Wicklow v Meath, Louth/Longford v Laois, Westmeath v Dublin; semi-finals - draw this evening.
Preliminary round - Monaghan v Cavan; quarter-finals - Donegal v Tyrone, Derry v Armagh, Monaghan/Cavan v Antrim, Fermanagh v Down; semi-finals - Donegal/Tyrone v Derry/Armagh, Monaghan/Cavan/Antrim v Fermanagh/Down.
Quarter-finals - Waterford v Limerick, Clare v Tipperary; semi-finals - Waterford/Limerick v Clare/Tipperary; Cork v Kerry.
Quarter-finals - London v Roscommon, Leitrim v Mayo; semi-finals - Leitrim/Mayo v London/Roscommon; Galway v Sligo