The Gaelic Players Association will accept the GAA’s decision to introduce a Super 8s stage instead off All-Ireland quarter-finals, it has announced.

GPA chairman Dermot Earley spoke against the motion at last weekend’s congress and the body has since come in for criticism from a number of GAA figures, including Tyrone player Ronan McNamee, Standing Rules Committee chairman Jarlath Burns and former Armagh star Oisín McConville.

Some of the criticism cited a lack of discussion and debate amongst the players ahead of the vote.

A statement released this evening, however, rejected this notion and detailed an extensive list of actions taken by the inter-county players body.

They said: “The GPA has engaged extensively with our members with regard to competition reform over the past 18 months in the form of surveys, squad meetings, regional workshops, the establishment of a steering group of current and former players and through a multitude of communications providing information and seeking input and feedback at various junctures.

“The most recent consultation with all inter-county squads was to ascertain a consensus as to how the sole GPA vote at Congress would be employed.

“Over 70% of squads expressed a wish to vote against this proposal.

“While the players' body accepts the decision of Congress, we will continue to consult with all inter-county players whose views will determine the next course of action for the GPA in relation to structures in both hurling and football.”