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Pittsburgh Steelers Aiming to Play Future NFL Regular-Season Game in Ireland

Erin WalshMay 25, 2023

Dublin , Ireland - 25 May 2023; The Pittsburgh Steelers made a welcome return to Croke Park today, where they played in the first ever NFL game in Ireland in 1997. The Steelers plan to grow their fanbase and the game of American Football in Ireland as part of the NFL's 'Global Markets Program'.Pictured is Pittsburgh Steelers Director of Business Development & Strategy Daniel Rooney. (Photo By Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images)
Photo By Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are hoping the luck of the Irish can help them in their endeavor of one day playing in the Emerald Isle.

The NFL recently awarded the Steelers marketing rights for Ireland and Northern Ireland, which allows the team to conduct "in-person activities such as fan and youth football activities" there.

But that isn't all the franchise intends on doing to build its global footprint. The Steelers are intent on playing a regular-season game in Ireland at some point in the future, according to Daniel Rooney, the team's director of business development and strategy.

"Our aspirations long term are to play a game in Ireland," Rooney said Thursday in Dublin, per the Associated Press. "As we move through the process, we'll be evaluating all options."

Steelers Ireland @SteelersIreland

Irish Sports stars <a href="https://twitter.com/HannahTyrrell21?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@HannahTyrrell21</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/CantguardPaud?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CantguardPaud</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/mossyquinn?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@mossyquinn</a> welcome Dan Rooney and <a href="https://twitter.com/KSlash10?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@KSlash10</a> to Ireland 🤝💚<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/HereWeGo?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#HereWeGo</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SteelersIreland?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SteelersIreland</a> <a href="https://t.co/tQGk7p8se0">pic.twitter.com/tQGk7p8se0</a>

Ireland has never hosted a regular-season NFL game, though the country did welcome the Steelers and Chicago Bears for a preseason matchup at Dublin's Croke Park, home of the Gaelic Athletic Association, in 1997.

Croke Park can hold up to 82,300 fans, making it the perfect venue for a potential Steelers regular-season game.

The NFL has held games in England, Germany and Mexico as part of its International Series dating back to 2007. But with marketing rights expanding to countries like Ireland, NFL games could soon be played around the globe.