THE speculation which has continued throughout the week in relation to the resumption of inter-county activity has only served to create uncertainty, apprehension and indeed foreboding going forward.
The GAA has to my mind issued mixed messages in relation to club games and to attendances at inter-county fixtures which not surprisingly appear to have caused confusion among fans.
When Croke Park chiefs initially decreed that there would be an immediate halt to club games this was understood to be for the remainder of this year but the fact that this is not the case means that we are awaiting further clarification of what might lie in store.
Similarly, up until last weekend it was thought that spectators would be able to attend Allianz League games at venues in Northern Ireland but it was suddenly decreed that this would not in fact be the case and instead they would be played behind closed doors as is the case with games in the rest of the island.
These 'misunderstandings' come on the back of an increased incidence of the Covid-19 threat across the province with a particularly worrying escalation in the border counties of Cavan, Monaghan and Donegal.
Fermanagh in particular have endured considerable stress over the course of the week and their manager Ryan McMenamin has been at pains to outline his squad's plight ahead of today's scheduled game against Clare.
McMenamin confirmed that no fewer than 17 players were affected to a greater or lesser extent by the virus which posed problems for him over the course of the week.
I think we have reached a point at which the Croke Park authorities clearly believe that fixtures must be fulfilled. This being the expectation, it means that pressure is heaped upon managers and players.
I keep hearing this word 'integrity' being used but I think this has to be viewed in the context of what has to date been one of the most extraordinary calendar years in the long history of the GAA.
Nothing is as it was but as I see it teams will just have to make every effort to fulfil fixtures come what may - and whatever happens, just happens.
Like this weekend, next weekend is laden with fixtures but if the League were to be concluded satisfactorily, that might afford at least some teams who are not confronted by immediate Championship matches some breathing space.
I personally believe that it is very important to adhere to the fixtures programme in both League and Championship as it has been mapped out.
If I am being truly honest, I must express the view that I see the actual staging of the games as being more important than the results.
I know there are a number of crucial matches still to take place in the League but the completion of the programme must remain a priority before the provincial and All-Ireland Championships kick in.
I understand that teams such as my own county of Armagh might be confronted by the challenge of gaining promotion or perhaps as is the case with Fermanagh of avoiding relegation but it does not quite seem like a do or die situation any more.
I feel there will be an overall feeling of relief that county teams are back playing football again and possibly brightening up what might be otherwise sombre weekends between now and Christmas.
The psyche has changed, in my book. Yes, there will be teams out there which will be missing perhaps as many as several players, but this might provide the opportunity for others to step up to the mark.
I accept that it might not be an ideal situation overall but I think teams will just have to bite the bullet.