The Aviva has landed

Caitlin McBride

The Aviva Stadium will officially open with an exclusive ceremony this afternoon.

As sports fanatics and music fans have been waiting with baited breath for the arrival of the new and improved Lansdowne Road stadium, a number of the country's elite will be getting a sneak peek.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen will be kicking off the celebrations at 2.30pm, where admittance is strictly by invitation only. But tours of the new facilities will be available after the official proceedings.

The new stadium in Ballsbridge will be the home of our international soccer and rugby teams. The project is a joint venture between the FAI and the IRFU and has received substantial input from the Government.

Already a string of high-profile matches have been lined up to take place over the coming months, with Manchester United officially confirmed to play there this summer.

Grammy award winning crooner Michael Buble has also been booked to play the stadium this September.

The 50,000-capacity stadium has been transformed from the renowned Lansdowne Road venue to a modernised Aviva Stadium over the past few years.

The venue boasts four tiers of seating for spectators and "excellent hospitality facilities throughout the ground".