Aviva Stadium: Ireland

Lansdowne Road, Dublin, Dublin 4, Ireland
William Murphy / Flickr.com

the Aviva Stadium is more commonly used a rugby ground than it is for football, with both the Ireland National Rugby Union Team and Leinster Rugby playing their games there. It enters our stadium guide section, however, because of the fact that it’s also the home of the Republic of Ireland’s national football team. They have played their games there ever since the stadium opened in 2010 as a replacement for Lansdowne Road. It stands on the site of the former ground, which was knocked down in 2007.

As for the Republic of Ireland, they have been playing football since 1924. Prior to that Ireland played its football as a single national team, organised by the Irish Football Association based out of Belfast. When Ireland was partitioned in 1920, Northern Ireland the Irish Free State became two separate entities. In 1921 the Football Association of the Irish Free State was formed and began to organise games for a new national side known as the Irish Free State until 1936. Then it became either Eire or Ireland before becoming the Republic of Ireland in 1953.

Stats

Aviva Stadium Stats
Year Opened2010
Capacity51,700
Average Attendance34,122
Record Attendance51,700 (Multiple)
Pitch Size106 x 68 (7208)
OwnerIrish Rugby Football Union / Football Association of Ireland
SponsorAviva
Clubs HostedLeinster Rugby, Republic of Ireland national football team, Ireland national rugby union team
First FixtureLeague of Ireland XI v Manchester United (04/08/10)
Republic Of Ireland Stats
Year Founded1921
NicknameThe Boys in Green, The Green Army
RivalsNorthern Ireland
Previous StadiumsLansdowne Road, Croke Park, Dalymount Park
KitGreen & White (Home) / White & Green (Away) / Grey & White (Third)
Training GroundFAI National Training Centre
Team OwnerFootball Association of Ireland
Record GoalscorerRobbie Keane (68)
Record AppearancesRobbie Keane (146)

Aviva Stadium Photos

Aviva Stadium Seating Plan & Where to Sit

By http://www.flickr.com/photos/glezos/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/glezos/5187231750/) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The Aviva stadium has a weird design to it. Three-quarters of it follow a standard, continuous bowl style that is typical of modern football stadiums. The other quarter is significantly smaller than the rest as it needs to allow light into the local residential area. Here’s some detail on each section of the ground:

  • North Stand - Located behind one of the goals, the North Stand is the smallest section in the stadium. It is built that way because planning permission for the stadium was granted only if this part of the ground didn’t intrude on the local housing any more than the previous section of Lansdowne Road did.
  • South Stand - Behind the opposite goal is the South Stand. This area follow the same three-tier pattern as the rest of the ground, with the second and third tiers separated by executive boxes. This is where the loudest Ireland fans tend to watch the match from.
  • East Stand - The East Stand runs along one side of the stadium and also has three tiers, with the second and third separated by the same row of executive boxes that can be found in the South Stand.
  • West Stand - The West Stand is considered to be the Main Stand in the stadium. This is where you’ll find the players’ tunnel, dressing room and VIP area.

Republic Of Ireland Ticket Prices

Ticket prices for national team games are a confusing issue. If the match is part of a tournament such as the European Championships or World Cup then the prices are typically set by UEFA or FIFA. If it's a friendly game then you’ll find that the price is set by the Irish FA and that they’ll differ depending on who they’re playing against. A friendly match against Austria is likely to be cheaper than one against England or Scotland, for example.

In general you’ll probably pay between €50 and €70 if you’re an adult, slightly less if you’re a concession and less again if you’re buying a ticket for a child. Premium tickets will cost even more, normally around the €120 mark.

How To Get Republic Of Ireland Tickets

The very best way to get tickets for Republic of Ireland matches is similar to the best way to get tickets for any team nowadays - via the Football Association of Ireland’s website. You can get tickets over the phone, too, and you can also drop the FAI an email if you’ve got more specific questions that need answering.

Getting To Aviva Stadium

Swap Start/End

Dublin is the capital of the Republic of Ireland, so there are numerous ways to get there once you’re on the Emerald Isle itself. Here are some of the best ways to get to the stadium, which is located in the Ballsbridge superb of the city:

Train - The Dublin DART literally runs underneath the stadium, so it’s the best way to get there. Look out for the Lansdowne Road Station as that’s where you’ll want to get off.

Bus - The Dublin City Sightseeing Hop On Hop Off tour bus stops at the stadium, so if you’re hoping to have a look around the centre itself before heading to the match then that’s an option. If you just want to head straight there, however, then the numbers 4, 7 and 8 are the ones to catch.

Car - Leave the city centre on Northumberland Road and then turn left onto Lansdowne Road. From there look out for the signs to the ground.

By Air - Dublin Airport is just over six miles from the stadium The D4 bus will take from there to close to the ground, or the 747 can take you into the city centre within about thirty minutes.

Taxi - A cab from Dublin Castle, which is pretty much in the city centre, out to the stadium will cost you about €14 and take around twenty minutes.

Parking Near Aviva Stadium

There’s limited match day parking, mainly for VIPs and those there on executive packages. Your best bet, therefore, is to park in the city centre and make your way out to the ground by other means.

Useful Resources

Aviva Stadium Hotels

As a capital city there are a huge amount of hotel options available to you. Here are some of our favourites:

O'Callaghan Mont Clare - £75+

1/4 Merrion Street Lower, Dublin, Dublin 2
This three star hotel has a restaurant and bar for your food and drink needs. There’s also free Wi-Fi and a meeting room, should you want to do any business whilst you’re there. It’s located in the centre of the city, though, so you’ll have a bit of a journey to get out to the stadium. More details.

Ballsbridge Hotel - £85+

Pembroke Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin, Dublin 4
Located about five minutes from the ground is this four star hotel with a restaurant and bar. There’s self-parking, if you want to drive, as well as a conference centre with computers. There’s free Wi-Fi here and it’s plenty big enough, with four-hundred guest rooms. More details.

Clayton Hotel & Leisure Club Cardiff Lane - £95+

Cardiff Lane, Sir John Rogerson's Quay, Dublin, Dublin, Dublin 2
We head back towards the city centre for this hotel, but it’s well worth the extra travel to the stadium. There’s a restaurant and bar here, plus free Wi-Fi, but the real fun starts when you want to relax a bit. As well as there being a health club with a full-service spa there’s also an indoor pool. More details.

Pubs & Bars Near Aviva Stadium

Dublin is a cracking night out, with plenty of different areas for those of you that love a pint. There’s Guinness aplenty in the city that created Ireland’s most famous drink and here are some of the places worth visiting:

The Temple Bar

47-48 Temple Bar, Dublin, Dublin 2 (+353 1 672 5286)
Temple Bar is probably Dublin’s most famous drinking area, with the pub that takes its name having stood there for 160 years. There are whiskeys, craft beers, fresh food and even traditional live music on offer here, so it really is worth your time. If you like a drink in the outdoors then the beer garden will be of interest.

Buskers On The Ball

Fleet Street, Dublin, Dublin 2 (+ 353 1 612 9241)
Buskers On The Ball is the ultimate sports bar, with claims to the city’s biggest screen. It shows all of the live events you could hope to watch, serves good bar food and any drink you might happen to fancy. There are also table tennis tables, pool tables and Fussball tables available for hire.

Searsons of Baggot Street

44 Baggot Street Upper, Dublin, Dublin 4 (+353 1 660 0330)
The closest bar to the stadium of the three on offer is Searsons of Baggot Street. It’s a well-known location for pre-match drinking and has both food and amazing drink on offer before the game. There are about 150 whiskeys available and a decent sized beer garden, too.

Facilities

The facilities are pretty good in the stadium, with the views fairly good from everywhere. The ground contains all of the usual places you can buy food and drink from as well as large atriums to enjoy some chill out time should you want to.

Hospitality

By Hoops341 (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

The FAI’s main hospitality experience takes place in the intelligently named Hospitality Experience Suite. It’s located the South Stand and there are a number of packages available. Whether you’d like a sit-down, three-course meal or are happy with just a buffet dinner, there’ll be something that ticks your box on offer. There are also a host of corporate boxes available for hire, with private bars and padded seats for all guests.

Should you be looking for a more involved experience then the Jack Charlton Hospitality Lounge may appeal. As well as reserved seating and complimentary food and drink, there’s also half-time refreshments on offer and entertainment both before and after the game. There’ll be an MC and you’ll also have the chance to meet some special guests, typically former ROI players or managers.

Private Hire

There are a host of event spaces available for hire at the Aviva Stadium. If you’re hosting a small-scale event then a corporate box will be more than sufficient, whilst a demonstration event could be held in the atrium. The 1872 lounge, Henry Dunlop Suite and Presidents Area are all larger spaces where dinner dances and the like can be accommodated. There’s even an outdoor area if your event requires such a space.

Stadium Tours & Museum

Tours of the Aviva Stadium run every day of the week apart from when it is in use. Tours last for around an hour and are conducted in English. They run from 10am until 4pm and cost €10 for adults, €7 for students and senior citizens and €5 for children under twelve. If you’re taking someone under four then they’ll get in for free.

Much like with most stadium tours throughout the world, you’ll take in all of the most exciting sights at the Aviva. You’ll get a chance to sit in the seat of your favourite player in the dressing room, wander down the players’ tunnel and have a look in the director’s box. You’ll also get to sit in the dugout and imagine what it would be like to be the manager on the side of the pitch.

About Republic Of Ireland

Ireland Team in 1914 - See page for author [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

In Irish Gaelic the team is known as Foireann peile náisiúnta Phoblacht na hÉireann, but to us it’s the Republic of Ireland national football team. Governed by the Football Association of Ireland, the team’s competitive debut came in the 1924 Summer Olympics where they made it as far as the quarter-finals. They reached the same stage of the European Nation’s Cup in 1964 but got beaten by the competition’s eventual winners Spain. They made the quarter-finals of the 1990 World Cup, their first entry into the tournament, and the last-sixteen of the 1994 tournament. This was their most successful period of the country’s history and came under the guidance of Jack Charlton.

The Boys In Green failed to qualify for another World Cup until the turn of the millennium when they made it to the 2002 tournament. They also entered the Euros in 2012 and 2016, making the last sixteen but losing to the hosts France. During the 1980s Ireland played their games at Lansdowne Road and continued to do so until it was closed and renovated in 2007.Whilst it was shut they played games at Croke Park, which has a capacity of 84,500. There is, understandably, a tense relationship between the Republic of Ireland and the Northern Ireland side which has been the case ever since the country was split in two.

Aviva Stadium History

By Rennett Stowe from USA (Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Ireland) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

With a capacity of over 50,000, the Aviva Stadium is the only UEFA Elite stadium in Ireland. As such it hosted the Europa League final between Porto and Braga in 2011, which the former side won 1-0. Lansdowne Road, which stood on the site before it was knocked down to be replaced by the Aviva, was owned in its entirety by the Irish Rugby Football Union. The new ground, however, is controlled by both the IRFU and the Football Association of Ireland. They have signed a 60-year lease together under the Lansdowne Road Stadium Development Company.

The ground was given an award by the British Construction Industry in 2011 for the innovation of its design. It is also a multi-use stadium as you’d expect from a facility that is owned by both the rugby and football unions of the country. As well as rugby matches for both Ireland and Leinster, the stadium also hosts the FAI Cup Final every year. In 2011 the Nations Cup was hosted there, as was the Dublin Super Cup. It has hosted American football games and numerous concerts from artists such as Michael Bublé, Neil Diamond and AC/DC.

Future Developments

William Murphy / Flickr.com

The stadium will be used as a venue for the 2020 European Championships that will be held throughout Europe. There will be numerous changes made to the ground and the surrounding area in the build-up to that, but at the moment we have no real idea what those changes will be. We’ll update this section when we know more.

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