April 11, 1971

The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) ended its long-held ban on members playing or attending “foreign” sports games such as soccer and rugby on April 11, 1971. The most notable controversy surrounding the ban took place in 1938, when Douglas Hyde, then President of Ireland, was suspended as a Patron of the Association after he attended an international soccer match in Dalymount Park, Dublin. He was later re-admitted in a vote of 120 – 11 at the GAA’s 1939 Annual Congress. The lifting of the ban also resulted in Croke Park, Dublin’s large GAA staduim, being permitted to host foreign games.

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