Ireland set to host England in 2015
Republic of Ireland are set to announce that England will play a prestige friendly international in Dublin in the summer of 2015, sources have told ESPN FC.
Football Association of Ireland (FAI) chief executive John Delaney is expected to confirm the date of the England game at the Aviva Stadium imminently, with a May or June fixture tipped to attract a sell-out crowd in the Irish capital.
It will represent England’s first visit to Ireland since the infamous abandoned fixture in February 1995, when visiting fans rioted and forced the game to be called off after just 28 minutes.
While the England rugby teams have played numerous times in Dublin over recent years, the political and sporting significance of Roy Hodgson’s football team playing in the Irish capital cannot be under-estimated.
The fixture appears to have been agreed in principle by the FAI and their English counterparts when they arranged a friendly between the two nations at Wembley last May, which ended in a 1-1 draw.
“There was a reciprocal agreement for them to come to Dublin,” Delaney said. “I thought it was right that we played the first match at Wembley because the last time we played them was the 1995 game.”
There have been suggestions that England could have played a game in Dublin as part of their preparations for this summer’s World Cup finals, but it seems that the game will now be played next year.