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Increase in crowd limits to boost local GAA finances

Easing of restrictions to see 50pc capacity at venues but little change for All-Ireland final

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The crowd capacity for the All-Ireland clash between Tyrone and Mayo will still be kept at 40,000. Credit: Sportsfile

The crowd capacity for the All-Ireland clash between Tyrone and Mayo will still be kept at 40,000. Credit: Sportsfile

The crowd capacity for the All-Ireland clash between Tyrone and Mayo will still be kept at 40,000. Credit: Sportsfile

GAA finances at local level are set for a further injection with the Government’s expected decision to lift the permitted crowds for outdoor events to 50pc of a venue’s capacity.

The decision, to be confirmed today, is part of a number of measures that further ease Covid restrictions but as the pace of club championships accelerates it will allow far greater numbers to attend the biggest games, providing a badly needed windfall.

Up to now just 200 are permitted to attend games where the capacity of a venue is below 5,000 with 500 cleared where capacity is above 5,000.

In some cases special arrangements have been made, like the 2,500 crowd allowed into the 45,000-capacity Páirc Uí Chaoimh for last Sunday’s 2020 Cork county football final between Nemo Rangers and Castlehaven.

But from next Tuesday the 50pc figure will apply which will go a long way to meeting the demand for all future club matches.

It won’t have any major impact on the All-Ireland football final however on Saturday week. That has already been capped at 40,000 and while the stadium’s capacity is 82,300, it could possibly provide at a late stage an extra 1,000 tickets for the first ever Mayo-Tyrone final.

Meanwhile, Declan Bonner has been returned as Donegal football manager for a further two years.

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Bonner’s was the only name when the deadline for submitting expressions of interest closed yesterday

Donegal clubs had been offered three days to make those submissions but when the deadline passed at 5pm only Bonner was in the running.

He has been in charge for four years now, winning back-to-back Ulster titles in his first two years before losing to Cavan and Tyrone in successive Ulster Championships.


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