Ireland v ABs: Chicago, November 2016



  • 		Ireland to play All Blacks in Chicago next year
    	
    		The Irish Times has learned that Ireland will play the All Blacks in the US for the first time
    Ireland last took on New Zealand in November 2013. Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images
    
    
    
    
    Gerry Thornley
    
    
    
    Topics:
    Joe Schmidt
    Ireland
    New Zealand
    
    
    
    
    Fri, Nov 13, 2015, 10:30
    
    First published:Fri, Nov 13, 2015, 10:30
    
    
    
    4
    
     
    
    
    
    
    
     
     
    
     
    

    The Irish rugby team is to break new ground by playing New Zealand in Chicago next November, with a return fixture against the back-to-back World Cup champions to be held in the Aviva Stadium later in that same autumnal window.
    The Irish Times has learned that Ireland will meet the All Blacks in Soldier Field, Chicago, on Saturday, November 5th, before hosting a Tier 2 country a week later at the Aviva Stadium. They will then play New Zealand again on November 19th as a prelude to rounding off a busy November window and year with a game against the World Cup finalists Australia on the 26th.
    Soldier Field, which is home to the Chicago Bears American football teams, hosted its first international rugby union test match when the All Blacks beat the United States 74-6 in November 2014. The match was a 61,500 sell-out, and although only 23,112 attended Australia’s 47-10 win over the USA Eagles in a World Cup warm-up match last September, it will be a surprise if the combined popularity of both Ireland and the All Blacks did not ensure a sell-out for their meeting next November.

    ‘A total mess’: Clive Woodward hits out at ‘arrogant’ English RFU
    Gordon D'Arcy: World Cup was won with offloads and line breaks
    Gerry Thornley's country-by-country report card
    
    The World Cup highlighted the willingness of Irish supporters to travel long and far to support their country and the IRFU will thus be tapping into the Irish diaspora for a first ever meeting with the All Blacks in America.
    These high profile tests are also in keeping with Joe Schmidt’s desire to face the world’s leading teams more regularly, and in addition to the Six Nations, adds to a three-test tour of South Africa next June in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Port Elizabeth. Six clashes with teams from the Rugby Championship in one calendar year is unprecedented and emulates the six games Argentina, Ireland’s World Cup quarter-final conquerors, will have against the same opponents in 2016.
    Ireland have never beaten New Zealand in 28 attempts, dating back to 1905, and never came closer than in the countries’ most recent test at the Aviva Stadium in November 2013, when the All Blacks won 24-22 thanks to a try in over time by Ryan Crotty and a twice taken conversion by Aaron Cruden. They are now set to have two cracks off the World champions next year.
    Ireland’s November 2016 schedule
    Saturday 5th: Ireland v New Zealand, Soldier Field, Chicago.
    Saturday 12th: Ireland v Tier 2 team, Aviva Stadium.
    Saturday 19th: Ireland v New Zealand, Aviva Stadium.
    Saturday 26th: Ireland v Australia, Aviva Stadium.
    

    http://www.irishtimes.com/sport/rugby/international/ireland-to-play-all-blacks-in-chicago-next-year-1.2428573



  • Could 2016 be the year they finally get one over us?



  • Ireland have a tough schedule next year: away 6N games to France and England (ok maybe not that tough...), a 3-match away series to SA, and 4 end of season games, including 2 against us, and 1 against Aussie.  I don't see them beating us away in Chicago, but they are a chance at home for sure.



  • The end-of-season Tests are effectively mid-season for NH teams - just a small point, though.
     
    Big diaspora to tap into in the States . . . Thank God for Irish Catholic virility . . .



  • I think Irelands chances of beating us may depend more on how we shape up after the minor rebuild  more than them , they should be fairly good , 
     
    we are a little of an unknown quantity at this stage



  • Would be good if the US could combine a test match a day before or day after against say Canada or Aussie or ... just to piggyback and enhance the event.



  • good idea booboo



  • Would be good if the US could combine a test match a day before or day after against say Canada or Aussie or ... just to piggyback and enhance the event.

    Supposedly the Eagles are playing the Maori at Soldier Field the night before.
     
    Can't say I'm a fan of the ABs vs Ireland fixture. If the All Blacks are willing to play Tests in America then play the Eagles. They're essentially whoring the States for their massive population to fill the stands and fill the NZR coffers. If I were an US rugby fan I'd feel a little used and abused.
     
    I know it makes financial sense for NZR but yeah, all seems a bit odd to me.



  • It'll sell out and a lot of money will be made. Both the NZRU and IRFU are keen to get extra revenue wherever they can.
     
    Suckers like me will still watch the game. No harm done, but wouldn't mind seeing the ABs play somewhere like Fiji, Georgia or Romania.



  • It'll sell out and a lot of money will be made. Both the NZRU and IRFU are keen to get extra revenue wherever they can.
     
    Suckers like me will still watch the game. No harm done, but wouldn't mind seeing the ABs play somewhere like Fiji, Georgia or Romania.

    Isnt this about growing the game, surely there is bigger growth potential in the US than those 3 combined, plus the NZRU makes some coin...this is the world we live in



  • Are people so sure it will sell out? Australia vs the USA didn't. Will two foreign teams really draw 60,000 in Chicago? I would say it depends how many Irish go across.



  • Supposedly the Eagles are playing the Maori at Soldier Field the night before.
     
    Can't say I'm a fan of the ABs vs Ireland fixture. If the All Blacks are willing to play Tests in America then play the Eagles. They're essentially whoring the States for their massive population to fill the stands and fill the NZR coffers. If I were an US rugby fan I'd feel a little used and abused.
     
    I know it makes financial sense for NZR but yeah, all seems a bit odd to me.

    Is it really going to grow the game if the ABs head over to the US every couple of years and give them another thrashing? I think the novelty would start to wear off pretty quickly, so having a proper Tier 1 vs Tier 1 game is a little different.
     
    That said, I think continually playing at Soldier Field every time they head over to the US is going to wear down the novelty too. They should be looking at spreading these games around, playing Ireland in Boston probably would've been a much better idea.



  • Supposedly the Eagles are playing the Maori at Soldier Field the night before.
    Can't say I'm a fan of the ABs vs Ireland fixture. If the All Blacks are willing to play Tests in America then play the Eagles. They're essentially whoring the States for their massive population to fill the stands and fill the NZR coffers. If I were an US rugby fan I'd feel a little used and abused.
    I know it makes financial sense for NZR but yeah, all seems a bit odd to me. don't know about US fans being concerned. We had our exec leadership in town this week. One in particular was raving about the AB's and the haka and went to the last game in the US with his 8yo. Absolutely in awe of the ab's. He didn't even know the US played in the WC! Reckon it works for everyone. Nzrfu makes coin which is a necessary evil, rugby gets exposure in the US and the Eagles get a game in which they shouldn't get pumped in.



  • Are people so sure it will sell out? Australia vs the USA didn't. Will two foreign teams really draw 60,000 in Chicago? I would say it depends how many Irish go across. it will sell out no doubt in my mind. Anyone else other than the ab's maybe not. But abs v anyone will sellout I reckon.



  • Isnt this about growing the game, surely there is bigger growth potential in the US than those 3 combined, plus the NZRU makes some coin...this is the world we live in

    You're right t is the world we live in...sigh,,, but I hate the way it just feels a tiny bit like the Harlem Globe-Trotter All Blacks...and yes we will sell it out..



  • Go for it NZRU, Aura, as beautiful as she is won't pay the bills
     
    Can't fault the realistic way NZRU has balanced income with gimmickry, but whatever our opinions, the bottom line has a dollar sign on it
     
    Otherwise we get more players like Piutau leaving at their prime with a hope and a "promise" they'll come back - players don't come back from up north any good. Or we have to come up with test quota schemes like the Aussies have decided to do (Giteau rule).
     
    As people have said, it's the way of the world we live in



  • Don't underestimate the Irish population on the east coast of America. It is massive and they could probably sell it out on their own!



  • Why always Chicago?



  • Why always Chicago?

    Mix of big enough city (and surrounding area), with ideal venue.
     
    Looking at the biggest cities in North America Los Angeles doesn't really have a suitable stadium, New York City's rectangular stadium is actually in New Jersey and quite a hike, Miami no downtown stadium an absolute hike with zero public transport, ditto Boston.
     
    Chicago being central is also a really cheap/convenient option to fly to from all over North America.
     
    San Francisco and Denver are the only two others that I've heard floated for the ABs and Chicago has pretty clear advantages over both of those.
     
    If I hazard a guess the next North American venue will be the upgraded stadium in Toronto where the Maori have played twice in the past three years.



  • it will sell out no doubt in my mind. Anyone else other than the ab's maybe not. But abs v anyone will sellout I reckon.

    The Irish travel and there is a shit tonne of Irish in the US/Canada. Between curiosity factor and the supporter base of both sides I expect nothing short of a quick sell out.


Log in to reply