Sport Soccer

Thursday 28 August 2014

Hoops to hit jackpot from Liverpool feel-good factor

Daniel McDonnell

Published 01/04/2014 | 02:30

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The FAI, Shamrock Rovers FC and Liverpool FC today announced a club friendly game between Shamrock Rovers and Liverpool FC on Wednesday, May 14th in Aviva Stadium

Close to 40,000 tickets have already been sold for the May 14 friendly between Liverpool and Shamrock Rovers and the buzz around the Premier League title contenders is expected to ensure a sell-out in the next week.

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There was a huge response on Friday when the Aviva Stadium event, which comes just three days after the conclusion of the Premier League season, went on general sale.

Fifteen thousand tickets were sold within 30 minutes and that figure reached 25,000 by the end of the day.

Sales have steadily continued over the weekend as Brendan Rodgers' side moved top of the Premier League, thus increasing the possibility that their trip to Dublin could serve as an extended victory parade – even though subsequent World Cup commitments could prevent star names from taking part in the match.

Both clubs were given separate allocations to sell to their own season ticket holders and regular attendees, and the Hoops are well on the way to filling their 7,000, and Liverpool are believed to have sold more than half of their 10,000 tally.

As of last night, the only tickets remaining on Ticketmaster were for the premium level section – the most expensive seats priced at €50 – with no availability left in the upper or lower tiers of the renovated Lansdowne Road. That could change if either of the clubs handed back a portion of their allocations but, given the initial take-up, that would amount to a small number, if it happened at all.

This game came about as a result of a tri-party agreement between Rovers, Liverpool and the FAI, and the organisers were always confident of another 50,000 full-house after last August's meeting of the Reds and Celtic filled the stadium, a dramatic contrast from the response for Irish international friendlies at the venue.

Rovers will earn a six-figure sum from this high-profile exercise, which will compensate the League of Ireland side for the absence of European football revenue from this year's budget. The Wednesday evening clash will kick-off at 5.30, thus avoiding a collision with that night's Europa League final.

Liverpool last met the Hoops in a Milltown friendly on November 23, 1982 with Jim Beglin, who went on to become Bob Paisley's final signing, lining out for the Dubliners in a 1-1 draw.

Irish Independent

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