The move back to the Aviva Stadium by Rugby and Soccer has been predicted to cost the local Dublin economy millions of euro due to the smaller capacity at the new Lansdowne Road stadium. The prediction was made recently by GAA president Christy Cooney speaking at the publication of the GAA and Croke Park Stadium’s annual accounts.
Cooney estimated that the hosting of games and concerts at their own flagship venue was worth half a billion euro to the city last year. Stadium director Peter McKenna estimated the figure could be as high as €600m while both claimed that the net worth to the area per game at Croker stood between €30m and €35m.
The size of the new venue in Dublin 4 has already caused some disquiet, as has the fact that both governing bodies, the IRFU and the FAI, are locked in to deals which prevent them from playing home ties anywhere else for the next 10 years.
That means that for a full decade the bigger games, such as the Ireland-England Six Nations clash and major soccer qualifiers cannot be switched to the 60% larger Croke Park nomatter what the demand levels are.
This will see thousands of disappointed fans missing out on attending their favourite events and will see the 2 sports associations at teh Aviva Stadium missing out on almost 2-million in ticket sales over the 10 years amounting to losses of up to €100million at today’s average ticket prices.
All Ireland champions Tyrone were beaten by a valiant 14 man Cork team in the GAA All Ireland Football semifinal at Croke Park today.
The All Ireland champions were outclassed by a Cork team that dominated throughout the field and at times in the second half looked as if it were they who had an extra man. Cork were reduced to 14 men late in the first half following a second yellow card for midfielder Alan O’Connor as a result of a perfectly executed dive by Tyrone’s Eoin Mulligan deep in the Cork half of the field.
Cork led by five points at half time after a brilliant first-half performance in which Daniel Goulding found the net after 8 minutes. Cork never looked back and led by 8 points at the 21 minute mark with 7 players scoring.
Despite the numerical advantage in the second half, Tyrone never closed the gap to less than 4 points.
Former dual star Denis Walsh has been named manager of Cork‘s senior hurling team.
44 year old Walsh, a member of the St Catherine’s club from Castlelyons in East Cork, holds two Hurling and two Football All-Ireland medals.
He was a double Munster winner in 1990, winning both Hurling and Football medals in the province but saw his name omitted from the Hurling team later in the year to miss out on the previously un-achieved dream of winning two All-Ireland’s medals in the same year.
Walsh managed the Waterford footballers from 2001 to 2003 and has coached successfully with his St. Catherines.
The decision to name Walsh was made by the committee chosen to make the appointment by GAA Central Council. It comprised Denis Coughlan (chairman), Jimmy Barry Murphy and John Fenton.
Walsh will be officially appointed in Cork on Monday 30 March.
While the rivalry and banter between fans on both sides of the county boundary between Kilkenny and Waterford reaches fever pitch in the coming hours, one team is guaranteed to be victorious in the 2008 All Ireland hurling final. If you are currently on your Ireland vacation, then you must see this epic encounter.
The replay of last week’s dramatic cork v kerry game takes place in Croke Park today at 2pm.
The game sees the neighbouring munster counties battle it out for a place in this year’s GAA All Ireland Chapmionship final on September 21st 2008.
Kerry will be without Darragh O’Shea who was sent off in last week’s encounter but the Cork star Donncha O’Connor is free to play following a ruling during the week that his red card in last week’s game was un-warranted.
If you are on an Ireland vacation right now and are in the Dublin area, then we strongly recommend you head to Croke Park to savour the atmosphere at one of the classic Gaelic football battles.