herald

Friday 18 August 2017

The buzz is back as 10,000 fans look for Scotland match tickets

Hero John O'Shea
Hero John O'Shea
Colin Shaw, from Ratoath, Co. Meath, Eugene O'Neill, from Dundalk, Co. Louth, and Peter Higgins, from Ratoath
Irish fans at the match
Ireland supporters, including Davy Keogh, celebrate after the game. UEFA EURO 2016 Championship Qualifer, Group D, Germany v Republic of Ireland, Veltins Stadium, Gelsenkirchen, Germany
Republic of Ireland supporters at the end of the game

IT WILL no doubt be the biggest Green Army invasion since the Irish football team qualified for Poland 2012.

Following this week's dramatic one-all draw against world champions Germany - in their own back yard - fans of the Boys in Green will travel to Scotland next month in their droves.

The game has taken on a new significance, with the winner securing a big advantage in the race to qualify for Euro 2016 in France.

Thousands of Ireland fans will make the short trip across the water for the November 14 fixture.

But it is unlikely all will be able to secure tickets, with demand already heating up.

Abbey Travel, which organises away trips for Irish football games, told the Herald that the phone was "ringing all day" yesterday with inquiries about arrangements for the match.

The travel agent has a two-day package for the trip, including travel and accommodation, at a cost of €325 per person. It has provided a guarantee of match tickets at face value.

However, many fans may be left disappointed with the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) receiving an allocation of around 3,000 tickets only.

A spokesperson for the association said that around 10,000 people had applied for the tickets.

"The ticket portal closed around six weeks ago, we had over 10,000 subscriptions," she explained.

"We have an allocation of 5pc of the stadium."

While the application process for the tickets has closed, they have not been issued yet.

The game has been scheduled to take place in Celtic's 60,832 capacity Celtic Park, with the Tartan Army's usual home, Hampden Park, tied up with the Commonwealth Games.

feel-good

Scottish football message boards have been a-buzz with discussion about how many Scots-Irish will turn out in the home section of the stadium to support Martin O'Neill's men.

With a feel-good factor now returning to Irish football, the FAI is also hopeful that fans will turn out for the upcoming friendly against the USA on November 18 - four days after the qualifier.

This was all on the back of the delight for the boys in green when John O'Shea marked his 100th cap with a cracking goal in the dying moments of Tuesday night's game.

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