Ireland to play New Zealand in Chicago

Date published: February 16 2016

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Ireland will take on New Zealand twice in November 2016, firstly in Soldier Field, Chicago and then again at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

Ireland will play New Zealand on Saturday, November 5 in a unique one-off Test match at the 61,500 seater stadium which is home to NFL outfit the Chicago Bears. The match is part of "The Rugby Weekend” which will also see the USA Eagles take on the New Zealand Maori on Friday, November 4 at Toyota Park.

Tickets for "The Rugby Weekend” will go on sale April 1.

Irish Rugby Football Union CEO, Philip Browne, commented, "There is a huge population in the USA who are proud of their Irish heritage as well as large numbers of Irish who have migrated more recently to live and work in the USA.

"We know that many of these people are Irish Rugby fans and we look forward to seeing them pack out the stadium, alongside some of our passionate travelling fans as we take on the world champions, New Zealand. 

"Ireland rugby fans on both sides of the Atlantic will have the opportunity to see their team take on some of the very best sides in World Rugby in November 2016.” 

IRFU Director of Commercial and Marketing Padraig Power said, "We are delighted to be involved in the rugby weekend and look forward to playing the world champions in the great city of Chicago. Irish Americans will relish seeing the Ireland rugby team contribute further to the development of the game of rugby in the US complimenting the wonderful growth of the game to date.”

USA Rugby CEO, Nigel Melville, believes that hosting high-profile countries like Ireland and New Zealand for an International Test Match will build further momentum for the popularity of the sport across the United States.

"We are looking forward to another fabulous weekend for rugby in the United States with our return to Chicago in November," he said.

"The city and its fans have shown the world how passionate they are about the sport, and we think this weekend will again take the game's popularity to another level.”

Upon returning to Ireland, the squad will immediately gear up for the 2016 November Tests which feature another Test against the All Blacks, a Test against the Rugby World Cup runners-up Australia and a re-match against Canada.

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