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GAA Grounds In The Mix As Possible Euro 2028 Venues

GAA Grounds In The Mix As Possible Euro 2028 Venues
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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Croke Park would be in the mix as a possible venue for Euro 2028 games should a joint bid to host the tournament by the FAI, along with the football associations of England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, be successful.

It was announced on Monday morning that thoughts of a joint bid by the associations to host the 2030 World Cup have been ditched in favour of Euro 2028.

"We are in the process of talking with our own governments, but also await to see from UEFA exactly what the bidding process will be in relation to the stadia that will be needed," FAI CEO Jonathan Hill said during a press conference on Monday morning.

Jonathan Hill: 'Croke Park and the Aviva Stadium would be in our thinking'

"We need to find out if it's a 24-team tournament or a 32-team tournament before we take those decisions.

"Both Croke Park and the Aviva Stadium would be in our thinking.

"In terms of the feasibility study that we initiated before in relation to the World Cup bid - absolutely [we've engaged with the GAA].

"We talk to [the GAA] anyway on a regular basis. That was part of the initial discussion."


croke park casement park euro 2028 venue

24 March 2007; A general view of GAA satdium Croke Park during the National Anthem. 2008 European Championship Qualifier, Republic of Ireland v Wales, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Hill added that the FAI is working closely with the Irish government on the Euro 2028 bid.


"We'll say in our strategic vision tonight that we are looking to use football to inspire the nation, and connect communities," said Hill.

Both we and the Irish government are extremely excited at the possibility of the bid, and are working closely together to ensure that we maximise value from it.

The government is behind this. They see the benefit of hosting major global sporting events. The Euros is the third largest sporting event in the world.

Patrick Nelson, CEO of the Irish Football Association, said they are keen to host games despite Windsor Park, which has a capacity of 18,500, not being a viable venue.


"We know that our national football stadium at Windsor Park doesn't meet the requisite capacity for the Euros," said Nelson.

"But, we also understand that being part of the bid brings a massive range of benefits to Northern Ireland.


"We will work with our partners to be in a position to hold matches here in Northern Ireland, and we look forward to driving it forward in the coming months and years."

croke park casement park euro 2028 venue

11 June 2020; A general view of Casement Park in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Nelson did not rule out the possibility of games being played at a redeveloped Casement Park. There are plans for the GAA ground to be renovated with a capacity of 34,578.

"We speak to the GAA on a regular basis," said Nelson.

"I'd probably speak to Brian [McAvoy, Ulster GAA secretary] every two weeks, if not every week. We keep each other up to date on a lot of things, and we talk about a lot of issues. A lot of them are to do with our joint projects with government.


"Nothing is ruled in or ruled out at this point, other than the fact that we definitely want to host games in Northern Ireland. We're not along for the ride. We want to be a full part in the bid. We'll be talking to everybody that we need to going forward."

Ian Maxwell, CEO of the Scottish FA, said it's "very much a collegiate bid" for Euro 2028, and not one being led by England.

"It makes sense that Wembley would be the firm favourite for the final, whether that's semi-finals as well, we can have those discussions at the right time," said Maxwell.

"England will have more stadiums. They are a bigger country, and that makes sense, but it doesn't make them any bigger a part of the bid than the rest of us all."

Featured images: 14 May 2010; An aerial view of GAA stadium Croke Park. Dublin. Picture credit; Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

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croke park casement park euro 2028 venue


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