The GAA's Central Council (Ard Chomhairle) has set out two separate proposals for a Tier 2 All-Ireland senior football championship.
A decision on the proposals will be taken at a Special Congress at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on 19 October, with a view to implementation in time for the 2020 Championship.
Proposal A would retain the provincial championships as presently organised with the current four rounds of All-Ireland SFC Qualifiers reducing to two rounds and only open to teams from that year's Allianz Football League Divisions 1 and 2 and any Division 3 and 4 teams who qualify for their provincial finals.
The Tier 2 Championship would be a straight knock-out competition for 16 teams from across Divisions 3 and 4 that do not make their provincial finals.
The competition could be organised on a geographical basis – northern and southern conferences for first- round ties, quarter-finals and semi-finals to ensure less travel for teams and supporters, while also retaining local rivalries.
The semi-finals would be the only senior inter-county GAA events on their respective weekend – barring a major replay.
Proposal B is similar to the above and also features Division 3 and 4 teams that do not reach a provincial decider entering a new Tier 2 championship.
A key difference is that in the event that a Division 3 or 4 team do reach a provincial final, to make up 16 teams in Tier 2 their place in Tier 2 would be taken by the lowest-ranked Division 2 team from that year's Allianz League.
The format for the Tier 2 Championship in Proposal B also features a 'back door' for beaten counties to play their way back into contention.
The finals under both proposals would take place at Croke Park and an additional prize for the winner of the final under both proposals would be a place reserved in the following year’s All-Ireland Sam Maguire championship, irrespective of their league position.
It is also envisaged that both proposals would have dedicated broadcast coverage and a marketing and promotional campaign with a dedicated All-Star selection and tour.
The proposals will now be sent to counties for discussion with a final wording on the proposals to be agreed at a meeting of Ard Chomhairle in September.
The GAA also announced today that the senior club finals would move from St Patrick's Day to January next year.
Proposal B format
16 Teams involved
Rd 1: 8 Teams v 8 Teams
Rd 2a: 4 Winners Rd 1 v 4 Winners Rd 1
Rd 2b: 4 Losers Rd 1 v 4 Losers Rd 1
Rd 3: 4 Rd 2b Winners v 4 Rd 2a Losers
QF: 4 Rd 2a Winners v 4 Rd 3 Winners
Semi-finals & Final