American football returns to Aviva Stadium

The Aviva Stadium is to host another American Football game in 2016 — four years after it last welcomed gridiron teams to Dublin.

The Aer Lingus College Football Classic between Boston College and Georgia Tech will take place on Saturday, September 3, 2016, and will be the third college game to be held in Dublin since 2012.

The announcement was made yesterday at a reception in Dublin attended by Taoiseach Enda Kenny, who said 25,000 US tourists will travel for the event.

“This is great news for Irish tourism and the economy; in 2012 and again last year, we witnessed a huge surge of US visitors to our shores for the Emerald Isle Classic and the Croke Park Classic and I have no doubt, particularly given Boston College’s close links with this country, we will see another spectacular success in 2016,” he said.

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Despite hosting last year’s Croke Park Classic between Penn State and University of Central Florida, the GAA announced it would not host next year’s game, citing the strength of the dollar against the euro as the reason why the event is “no longer viable for the association”.

The match will be the first American football game at Lansdowne Road since Notre Dame and the Navy contested the Emerald Isle Classic in 2012.

Next year’s match-up will see the Boston College Eagles kick off the 2016/17 NCAA Division I college football season in an Atlantic Coast Conference game against the Yellow Jackets of Georgia Tech.

It will be Boston College’s second time visiting Lansdowne Road, having beaten the Army 38-24 in Dublin in 1988; the first college football game to be played in Ireland.

Details on tickets for the event will be released on the dedicated match website collegefootballireland.com.

Dublin Chamber of Commerce has predicted the match will be worth €24m to the local economy.

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