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Gibraltar FA confirms Ireland Euro 2016 qualifier will be in Portugal

Reports had suggested that the game could be switched to London.

Ireland captain Robbie Keane and Gibraltar goalkeeper Jordan Perez.
Ireland captain Robbie Keane and Gibraltar goalkeeper Jordan Perez.
Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

IRELAND WILL PLAY their Euro 2016 qualifier against Gibraltar in Portugal, it has been confirmed.

The Boys in Green, who are joint top of Group D with seven points from three games, defeated the minnows 7-0 in Dublin earlier this month and are scheduled to face them away next year on 4 September.

Gibraltar are currently playing home fixtures at the Estadio do Algarve in Faro as work continues on a new 10,000-seater stadium but reports suggested the remaining matches could be moved to London due tax and security issues.

However, the Gibraltar Football Association has released a statement this morning to confirm that they will take place in Portugal.

“Following speculation that matches may be moved to venues in London, the GFA would like to confirm that the European Qualifiers against Germany (13th June 2015), the Republic of Ireland (4th September 2015) and Scotland (11th October 2015) will take place at the Estadio do Algarve in Faro/Loule, Portugal,” it reads.

“The two issues of concern regarding the continued use of the Estadio do Algarve have now been resolved to the GFA’s satisfaction. Concerns over VAT and other tax issues have been resolved following discussions with the Portuguese FA, Portuguese tax authorities and UEFA.

“Concerns over security arrangements have also been resolved after the GFA contracted a new security company to deal with security at the stadium on match-days. The new company performed satisfactorily during the recent match versus Georgia and the feedback received by the GFA from our supporters was very positive in that respect.

Furthermore, the GFA had also received representations from the German, Irish and Scottish FAs on behalf of German, Irish and Scottish fans who had already booked flights and made accommodation arrangements in Portugal. The GFA will now provide those FAs with assurances that the matches will take place in Portugal.

“Given all these considerations, the GFA is content to continue using the Estadio do Algarve as our “home” stadium, until such time as there is a stadium in Gibraltar which meets with UEFA’s approval for the hosting of competitive international matches.”

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Ben Blake

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