It’s not often that a football team’s entourage makes the headlines but that’s what has happened after details of the Tyrone GAA team’s backroom staff expenditure made the news in a local daily newspaper.
The Belfast Telegraph has placed a spotlight upon the expenses racked up by the All Ireland semi-finalists.
It claimed that the size of Manager Mickey Harte’s backroom team, 14, had been a cause of concern for some within the local GAA scene.
This year, Tyrone enjoyed a successful All-Ireland run, and their success was due in no small part to the highly motivated support team that ensured the players were as well-prepared and supported as possible - physically and mentally.
However. the report has revealed some eye-watering sums.
For example, in 2014 Tyrone’s senior footballers cost £57,521 in players’ travel expenses. Their medical, physiotherapy and nutritional bill was £55,043. Catering cost £39,783 last year.
Spread out over the course of a year, their monthly bill to keep the show on the road with all their county teams was £39,082 in 2013 and £34,279 in 2014.
Off-setting that expenditure are a number of revenue streams. Sponsorship brought in £260,903 in 2013, increasing to £282,050 the following season.
But this is merely one wing of the GAA in Tyrone. Additional costs include coaching and games development — with all the materials and salaries that requires — administration, upkeep of premises and dozens of other necessary expenses.
The report also referred to the bill of another Ulster county with a monthly expenditure of around £20,000 to keep their panel and backroom team in food and diesel, a cost almost identical to the Tyrone bill. It said that this was one of the lower bills to prepare an inter-county football team during the season.