12 years since it first opened its doors, Aviva Stadium has played host to some of the most momentous and meaningful moments in Irish sport – and beyond. From Ronaldo to Rihanna, the home of Irish Rugby and Soccer has welcomed a galaxy of stars, not to mention legions of fans, for days and nights to go down in history.
Of course, with so many memorable moments it’s hard to recall every single one – which is why we’ve put together a little quiz to see just how well you remember some of the stadium’s finest hours. Take the quiz here – and read on for a handful of highlights to jog your memory…
The big kick-off - August 2010
When it came to beginning a new chapter in Irish sport, the chance was handed to a new generation; the most talented young rugby players from the four provinces came together for a Leinster/Ulster v Connacht/Munster challenge match. It was a lop-sided affair, ending 68-0, but gave fans a long-awaited opportunity to survey the new home of Irish rugby for themselves. It also gave Craig Gilroy one of his claims to fame, as he became the first player to score a try in the new venue!
Michael Bublé - September 2010
As the first series of concerts held in the stadium, Irish fans will be sure to remember the Canadian crooner’s Aviva Stadium gigs in 2010. Belting out some of his best-known hits as part of the worldwide Crazy Love Tour, it’s hard to forget the 50,000 strong crowds singing along to ‘Home’, the platinum selling track from his second studio album!
Lady Gaga - September 2012
Stefani Germanotta, better known as Lady Gaga to the world, headed to Aviva Stadium in 2012 for her first major outdoor concert in the Irish capital. With a devout fanbase and a captivating stage presence, her Dublin leg of the Born This Way Ball was a real treat, with it being extremely well received by critics across the board.
Ireland v Estonia - European Championships Playoff, 2011
A 4-0 win in Tallinn a few days earlier meant that it would take a meltdown of epic proportions for Ireland to fall short of qualification for a major tournament for the first time in a decade; appropriately enough, then, supporters arrived in a party mood. With singing, dancing, and floating paper aeroplanes through the night sky, the 1-1 result on the pitch was simply a backdrop to the celebrations in the stands – and the making of plans for Poland and Ukraine that summer!
Ireland v New Zealand - Autumn International, 2013
No list of memorable occasions at Aviva Stadium would be complete without acknowledging one of the most heart-breaking events in Irish rugby. Having raced into a 19-0 lead, Joe Schmidt’s men looked certain to topple the All Blacks for the first time, but a fightback crowned by Ryan Crotty’s last-minute try saw the Kiwis triumph by two. It was a painful day for Irish fans, made somewhat more bearable now in the knowledge that Ireland would have their day (and more than one, too!) in the years afterwards…
We’ve been lucky enough to call Aviva Stadium our home for the past 12 years. Throughout the years, we’ve made sure that it remains a cleaner and greener place for superstars, fans and some rather unusual supporters too… Learn more about our sustainability initiatives here: the measures that have been taken to make Aviva Stadium a greener and cleaner place.