Northern Ireland news

Poll: Overall majority in support of Euro 2028 games at Casement Park but most unionists against proposal

Artists' impression of the new 34,000 Casement Park stadium in west Belfast.
John Breslin

FEWER than a third of people in Northern Ireland oppose Casement Park hosting Euro 2028 games, but this includes the vast majority of unionists, a poll has found.

A majority of those canvassed, 54%, actively support the playing of soccer at the west Belfast venue, with 31% firmly against, according to the LucidTalk opinion poll.

The breakdown shows that 94% of nationalists and 69% of Alliance/Green voters support its use during the tournament, with only 12% of unionists in that camp.

Casement Park is one of ten venues listed to host games at the tournament after the UK and Ireland's unopposed bid was accepted by UEFA.

Read more: Casement Park - the story so far

Read more: 'You can shove your Casement Park up your h***' - vulgar anti-Casement Park chant sung at Windsor

Not a single nationalist actively opposes the playing of soccer at Casement, with the remaining size per cent having no opinion. Almost seven out of 10 unionists are actively against. Sixty percent would prefer the north hosted no games if Casement is the only choice of venue. 

More than 3,000 people took part in the online poll for the Belfast Telegraph conducted from October 27 to 30. The sample was scientifically weighted to reflect the population, LucidTalk said.

Some supporters of the Northern Ireland team have vocally and with banners  protested against the proposed use of Casement, where it is planned to build a 34,000 seater GAA stadium .

Some Northern Ireland fans show their opposition to games played at rebuilt Casement Park

Banners proclaiming ‘No Casement’ were spotted at recent Euro 24 qualifiers against San Marino and Slovenia at Windsor Park. A section of the crowd also shouted: "You can shove your Casement Park up your h***." 

Among nationalists, a majority, 53% said they would be comfortable attending a Northern Ireland game at Casement and supporting the team. Just over 40% said they would not.

In total, 39% of people would be happy to cheer for Michael O’Neill’s men in the GAA stadium, with 31% saying they wanted the game elsewhere and 19% who will definitely not attend support the team.  

The Casement Park site in August of this year (Niall Carson/PA)
Almost seven in 10 Alliance/Green voters would be happy to cheer for the north in Casement,  compared to 17% of unionists.



Northern Ireland news