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Sunday 15 September 2019

Soccer fans pile into Bertie's local for 3D football

Michael McHale

IT was a sight for sore eyes as a famous pub treated Irish soccer punters to a whole new 3D dimension yesterday.

Hundreds of fans packed into former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern's local, Fagan's in Dublin, as Arsenal and Manchester United kicked off the world's first live 3D sports broadcast.

The Drumcondra pub, along with eight other British bars, made history as they became the first premises to show a football game using the latest polarised 3D method.

The feature works by two separate camera shots being shown together on screen, with viewers wearing special glasses that criss-cross the images so they look like they're "popping out" of the television.


Television provider Sky is pioneering the project. If successful, the technology could be rolled out to pubs across the country by the spring.

Fagan's owner Eamon O'Malley said he was "delighted" his premises was chosen.

Bertie was also impressed, but he decided against staying to watch the game, instead making a quick appearance before the kick-off to try on the specs.

"He thought it was fantastic, but couldn't stay to watch the match," Eamon's wife Carmel said about Bertie's reaction to it.

No doubt the occasion boosted profits, with the pub packed with supporters all curious about the technology.

"I'd say there is treble the usual amount of people that would be here on a normal Sunday," Fagan's regular Paul Hegarty said.

Another pair of spectators travelled from Co Kildare to get a taste of the action, and were equally happy.

"It's just like pop-out footballers," Gar Deedy from Naas said, adding that when it is made available in people's homes "I'd be the first to sign up to it".

Young Luke (12) and James (7) Foy were impressed with the picture they were seeing, but as Liverpool fans, were less happy to see their arch rivals win the game.

"It's more lively and makes for a better atmosphere," the boys' mother Mary said.

As Arsenal kicked off, commentator Alan Parry said: "It's a moment of television history. You'll see every shot, every tackle and every save in a way you've never seen before. I'm sure it will revolutionise the way we watch live sports."

Irish Independent

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