Gaelic Football Club. Est. 2009
Gaelic football is played by teams of 15 on a rectangular grass pitch with H-shaped goals at each end. The primary object is to score by kicking or striking the ball with the hand and getting it through the goals. The team with the highest score at the end of the match wins. Players advance the ball up the field with a combination of carrying, soloing (dropping and then toe-kicking the ball upward into the hands), kicking, and hand-passing to their team-mates.
Statistics show the game drawing significantly more spectators than any other sport in the Republic of Ireland recently; 2005 ESRI figures indicate that it draws 34% of total attendances at sports events in Ireland, with the closest rival, hurling drawing 23%.
Football is one of four Gaelic games run by the Gaelic Athletic Association, the largest sporting organisation in Ireland with more than 800,000 members. It has strict rules on player amateurism and the pinnacle of the sport is the inter-county All-Ireland Football Final. The game is believed to have descended from ancient Irish football known as caid which dates back to medieval times, although the modern rules were not set down until 1886.
Gaelic football is also played in countries outside Ireland, often although not solely played by members of the Irish diaspora. It is increasing in popularity internationally. Teams from both London and New York compete in the annual All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, the highest level of the game.
International rules football, a hybrid of Gaelic football and Australian rules football, facilitates matches between Gaelic footballers and Australian-rules footballers. International rules is most prominently used for international representative matches between Ireland and Australia.
Gaelic Football is a field game which has developed as a distinct game similar to the progression of Australian Rules. Gaelic Football is played on a pitch up to 145m long and 90m wide. The goalposts are the same shape as on a rugby pitch, with the crossbar lower than a rugby one and slightly higher than a soccer one.
The ball used in Gaelic Football is round, slightly smaller than a soccer ball. It can be carried in the hand for a distance of four steps and can be kicked or "hand-passed", a striking motion with the hand or fist. After every four steps the ball must be either bounced or "solo-ed", an action of dropping the ball onto the foot and kicking it back into the hand.
You may not bounce the ball twice in a row. To score, you put the ball over the crossbar by foot or hand / fist for one point or under the crossbar and into the net by foot or the hand / fist in certain circumstances for a goal, the latter being the equivalent of three points. Each team consists of 15 players, lining out as per the diagram.
Officials for a game comprise of a referee, two linesmen (to indicate when the ball leaves the field of play at the side and to mark '45’ free kicks and four umpires (to signal scores, assist the referee in controlling the games, and to assist linesmen in positioning '45' frees).
A goal is signalled by raising a green flag, placed to the left of the goal. A point is signalled by raising a white flag, placed to the right of goal. A '45' is signalled by the umpire raising his/her outside arm. A 'square ball', when a player scores having arrived in the 'square' prior to receiving the ball, is signalled by pointing at the small parallelogram.
When Gaelic Football is being player in Europe, it is generally played on a soccer or rugby pitch and the goals are modified to suit. Since the dimensions of a rugby or soccer pitch are considerably smaller. The lineout has been reduced to suit. Here you can see a trypical formation of a team that plays on a soccer or rugby pitch. All the usual rules and regulations apply, with regards to goal kicks, '45s' etc.
The majority of adult football and all minor and under-21 matches last for 60 minutes, divided into two halves of 30 minutes, with the exception of senior inter-county games which last for 70 minutes (two halves of 35 minutes). Draws are decided by replays or by playing 20 minutes of extra time (two halves of 10 minutes). The under-12s have a half of 20 minutes or 25 minutes in some cases. Half-time lasts for about 15 minutes.
Teams consist of fifteen players (a goalkeeper, two corner backs, a full back, two wing backs,a centre back, two mid fielders, two wing forwards, a centre forward, two corner forwards and a full forward) plus up to fifteen substitutes, of which five may be used. Each player is numbered 1–15, starting with the goalkeeper, who must wear a jersey colour different from that of his or her teammates.
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