Croke Park

Shot In The Arm As All-Ireland Final Showpieces To Host 40,000 Fans

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A crowd of 40,000 will be allowed entry to next month’s All-Ireland senior finals while Ireland’s World Cup qualifiers in September are set to be played before a crowd of 25,000.

It follows negotiations between Minister Jack Chambers and the relevant governing bodies.

It means there will be a significant increase in the attendance at sporting fixtures as the Covid-19 restrictions are further relaxed.

Croke Park’s capacity is limited to just 18,000 ahead of this weekend’s Ulster and Leinster football finals. That will increase to 24,000 for the All-Ireland hurling semi-finals next weekend 7-8 August and the football fixtures the following weekend on 14-15 August.

The All-Ireland hurling final will take place on the 22nd of August preceeding the football decider on the 29th of August.

Ireland’s World Cup qualifier at the Aviva Stadium against Serbia and Azerbaijan will also have permitted attendances of 25,000 each.

Minister Chambers outlined how test events proved so crucial to their decision today..

I am delighted to announce increased attendances for the All-Ireland semi-finals and finals as well as two World Cup Qualifiers. This is an important signal of how far we have come as a country.

From the start of this process I stated we wanted to be ambitious around getting supporters back in stadia all around the country and the figures for the upcoming games show that is exactly what is happening.

I am really pleased we have implemented a very careful return of crowds starting with smaller numbers at first and gradually increasing over the summer months. The pilot events have been a great success and have shown how live sporting and other events can be held in a safe manner.”