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Dublin's Paddy Andrews celebrates after scoring a goal against Westmeath at Croke Park. Picture: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

Dublin's Paddy Andrews celebrates after scoring a goal against Westmeath at Croke Park. Picture: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

Dublin's Paddy Andrews celebrates after scoring a goal against Westmeath at Croke Park. Picture: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE

CROKE PARK is gearing up for by far the biggest GAA attendance of the year to date when Dublin and Kildare top the bill for next Sunday's Leinster SFC semi-final double-header.

"There seems to be great interest – we are definitely looking at 50,000-plus," predicted Leinster Council chairman Martin Skelly.

"Wexford and Meath is a very difficult game to call and it's just a mouthwatering prospect in itself.

"People may call Dublin and Kildare the main event of the day, but it's a fantastic double-header.

"In fact it's a fantastic festival of football. And the prize is huge – a place in the Leinster final."

The crowds flocking to watch Dublin have definitely dropped in the post-bubble era, with fans more selective about the early provincial rounds. As a result, the recent double-header comprising quarter-final victories for Kildare and Dublin was watched by 33,008.

But Skelly declared: "Our experience this year to date is that the crowds have been fantastic. We find that people are voting with their feet and going to matches."


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