Croke Park set for Friday night lights

The GAA has backed Dublin’s bid to host their National Football League games in Croke Park on Friday nights next year as long as they are agreed to by the opposition.

The Dubs had planned on playing Mayo under the floodlights last year during the Spring Series but the Connacht champions refused, saying it was unfair to expect players and fans to travel such a distance on a workday.

“The problem with the Dublin-Mayo game last year was that it was Mayo. If it was Dublin-Meath or Dublin-Kildare, two teams from adjoining counties, there’s nothing in principal against that,” said Paraic Duffy, the Director General of the GAA.

“We often play U21 games midweek, and so on. The problem with Mayo was because they were so far away they had to take a day off work and so on. But there’s no reason why Dublin couldn’t play Laois, for example, who are in the same division.

“I think that would be well worth exploring, and I certainly think there would be a market for it, a game played on a Friday night against an adjoining team.”

The first floodlit game to be played in GAA HQ was Dublin v Tyrone in the opening fixture of the 2007 National Football League, the game attracted a capacity 81,000 crowd and the Dublin county board have been keen to spectacle.

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