| 6.8°C Dublin

Airport is packed with loyal fans as getaway takes off

EURO 2012 has finally arrived - and thousands of Irish fans have departed as the exodus to Poland began from early today.

Dublin Airport was crammed with thousands of soccer fans as the mass getaway to Euro 2012 got fully under way.

As the rain lashed down, floods of green queues formed inside in scenes that Terminal 2 has never witnessed before.

For one fan it was a last-minute dash as he only decided to get on board last Monday.

Anthony Masson, from Templeogue, said that "jealousy" got the better of him after months of listening to his friends talk about the unique trip.

"I basically checked the flights on Monday and they were an alright price. My mates had already paid for an extra person on the camp site because the minimum was four so I'm off."


He paid €450 for the last-minute flights and now says he's determined to stay at the championship for as long as the Green Army last.

His pal David McCabe explained that they had planned the trip three months ago.

"We're collecting our camper van from Munich. We could end up sleeping in Topaz stations on the side of the road."

He reckons that Robbie Keane is destined to lead Ireland to the second round where they will meet England "and who knows after that".

A group of five lads from Portmarnock told the Herald that they are getting their van "somewhere near the Danish border".

Adrian O'Connor explained: "Five of us are flying to Hamburg and then driving for nine hours to Poznan. We'll be splitting up the driving along the way.

"I think we'll beat Croatia one-nil and then get two nil-nil draws that'll see us through."


Joe Suttle added: "We've spent six months planning it bit by bit but we'll probably be lucky to make it over for Sunday. We're getting the camper van somewhere near the Danish border.

"I reckon we'll get out of the group."

Gary Rafferty, from Dublin city centre, also believes that Trap's boys can beat Croatia. His mates are picking up their camper van in Germany as well and staying for all three group matches.

Asked whether they'd extend the holiday for a second-round game, he laughed: "We'll wait and see can we get off work."