Gaelic ace to join Crows in AFL pre-season

Gaelic footballer Cathal McShane, who has been linked with an AFL move, will join Adelaide's pre-season training program this month.

Adelaide Crows teammates during an AFL match.
Adelaide Crows teammates during an AFL match. Picture: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

Adelaide have confirmed that Irish Gaelic football star Cathal McShane will join the AFL club during their pre-season training program.

Tyrone forward McShane, who was named as Ireland's best full forward in 2019, has been linked with Brisbane in recent days with reporteds claiming he is weighing up a two-year offer from the Lions.

McShane finished as the Championship's joint top scorer in 2019, with the 193cm forward attracting interest from multiple AFL clubs.

The 24-year-old has flown to Australia for 10-12 days and appears set to join the record 17 Irish players on AFL lists for 2020.

The Crows can still sign McShane as a Category B rookie for this season.

"We're looking forward to Cathal joining our pre-season training program and getting to know him a bit better," Crows general manager list management and strategy Justin Reid said.

"He has the physical attributes, coming in at a touch over 190 centimetres. He's also strong in the air and can kick on both feet.

"Once he lands in Adelaide, it'll provide the opportunity to understand more about our club, our philosophies and what our program looks like."

On Sunday, Tyrone manager Mickey Harte confirmed that McShane is considering a move Down Under.

"He (McShane) has been wooed by some people in the AFL," Harte told the BBC.

"I think he's gone out there for a few days to see what that might be like.

"There has been no final decision yet on whether he's going to go or whether he will stay with us but, at the moment, he's certainly considering that move."

Harte is still hoping that McShane commits his future to Tyrone but says he will wish the forward the best if he decides to make the move to Australia.

A vocal critic of the Gaelic Athletic Association's (GAA) relationship with the AFL, Harte also hit out at former Gaelic footballers who are acting as intermediaries for players' moves to Australia.

"I've not been a fan of the engagement we've had with the AFL over many, many years now," he said.

"In the past, we had unknown Australians trying to woo our players out to the AFL league.

"Now we've got ex-Gaelic players doing it, which really saddens me.

"We've got recruits for the AFL within our own ranks of the GAA, and that's sad."


AAP