The Aer Lingus Classic American football game between the Navy and Notre Dame has been cancelled at the Aviva Stadium. The game will now be played in America according to RTE Sport.
In truth the game was never going to be likely played. This coming after the government in April issued a ban on events and public gatherings of more than 5,000 people. RTE say that organisers of the event told them they didn’t need a licence and therefore that regulation wouldn’t come into effect. A statement on Tuesday said, “Following extensive consultation with the Irish government, medical authorities and the leadership teams at Navy and Notre Dame, the Aer Lingus Classic football game scheduled for 29 August will not be played at Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ireland”.
The statement said the game will now be played in Annapolis and will open the 2020 college football season. It said, “It is the intention of both Navy and Notre Dame to open the 2020 college football season with the 94th consecutive playing of the longest continuous intersectional rivalry in the country at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, USA”.
Nearly 40,000 American visitors were due to attend the game but obviously now that won’t be happening meaning a knock on effort for restaurants, pubs, clubs and hotels. Many are struggling and many remain closed and will be until July. The game was also due to be live on ESPN which would broadcast to a potential 6 million people.
Leo Varadkar said about the game, College football is one of the greatest spectacles in world sport and we had been thoroughly looking forward to welcoming Navy and Notre Dame here this summer for the first game of the Aer Lingus College Football Classic Series”. He continued “Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond our control, that is now not possible, but we hope to see both universities return to Aviva Stadium in the coming years.”