FAI announce two friendlies this year in the Aviva

The FAI have arranged two international friendlies for the Republic of Ireland in the Aviva Stadium this year.

The Boys in Green will host Bulgaria on Tuesday, September 10, and New Zealand on Thursday, November 14.

The game against Bulgaria will come five days after Mick McCarthy's team face Switzerland at home in their EURO 2020 qualifier, while the New Zealand fixture comes four days before Ireland complete their fixtures in Group D with a home clash against Denmark.

It brings the total of internationals in 2019 up to 10 - six of which will be played on home soil.

Bulgaria are 46th on the FIFA World Rankings and finished second in their 2018 UEFA Nations League group following wins over Slovenia, Norway and Cyprus. They last visited Dublin in March 2009 and this will be the 10th meeting between the teams.

Ireland have never played against New Zealand at senior level and they will be the 80th different country that Ireland will have faced since 1926.

The FAI are waiting on a final decision from UEFA on the venue for Ireland's EURO 2020 qualifier away to Gibraltar on Saturday, March 23. The Gibraltar FA had selected the Victoria Stadium before the UEFA deadline but are currently in discussions with UEFA to assess the suitability of the stadium to host EURO 2020 Qualifiers.

The FAI expects a final decision by early next week.

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