Sunday 22 January 2017

Ireland v Serbia will go ahead after referee is happy with pitch inspection despite torrential downpour

Published 05/09/2016 | 16:32

Hungarian referee Viktor Kassai decided that tonight's World Cup qualifier between Serbia and Ireland in Belgrade will go ahead after the game was placed in doubt due to torrential rain.

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A dry spell in the Serbian capital ended at lunchtime today when a heavy downpour started, and following hours of incessant rain, there was a possibility that the pitch may not be playable.

The stadium was inspected and cleared at a standard UEFA meeting at the venue, the Red Star Stadium, this morning, but that was before the rain started. 

Kassai and his team of officials carried out a later inspection moments ago, and they deemed the pitch to be playable.

As tomorrow is an official international date, there was a possibility that the fixture could have been played in the afternoon had tonight's game been postponed.

A crowd of 25,000, including 800 Ireland fans, had been expected.

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