The Football Association of Ireland today confirmed that its appeal to UEFA to have the Andorra v Republic of Ireland match played in Barcelona on October 7 has been turned down.
The Andorran FA originally requested permission from UEFA to play the match in Barcelona following discussions with the FAI in order to accommodate the large expected travelling support. The request was made by the Andorran FA and supported by the FAI purely in the interests of accommodating supporters.
The match will now take place on October 7 in Estadi Comunal, Andorra at 21.30 hrs local.
The FAI expressed its disappointment at the decision and it lateness, coming after the 60 day period normally required by protocol which will cause difficulties for supporters.
The decision goes against precedents set in the past when UEFA and FIFA granted permission for games against Andorra to be played in Barcelona, as lately as England’s Euro 2008 qualifier against Andorra which was played, with permission, in Barcelona.
The Football Association of Ireland is already exploring the possibility of arranging a fan zone in Barcelona to accommodate fans who had made travel arrangements prior to today’s UEFA decision.