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Cork boss rues Dublin attendances
27 Apr 2015 11:11
Cork City manager John Caulfield feels ‘the boat is being missed’ by Dublin clubs amidst poor attendances in the capital for League of Ireland matches.
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City hosted champions Dundalk on Friday in front of a capacity crowd of close to 7,000 spectators, a game also covered live on RTÉ 2.
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Just 1,259 watched St Patrick’s Athletic’s home match with Sligo Rovers at the same time, while Bohemians also average well below 2,000 spectators.
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Caulfield told reporters after the game: “I get disappointed when I watch a lot of the games in Dublin because I look at the teams getting 1,200, 1,300, 1,400 people and they’re near the top of the table. And I’m saying, why aren’t they marketing their club? Why aren’t they bringing kids to their games? Bar Rovers, there’s no one in Dublin who attracts crowds anymore, which is very, very disappointing.
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“We’ve had huge crowds all year. We are the biggest club out there. Historically, [Shamrock] Rovers have won more trophies, but we are the biggest club in the league and without the provincial teams, I keep saying this, this league is nowhere. We need Galway to do well, we need Limerick, we need Sligo, we need Derry…because without those clubs you’re going nowhere.
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“Now, people may say, you’re down in Cork and you’re one club for the city. But Dublin has four-times the population. Clubs are in massive areas where there’s a huge, huge population. It’s disappointing.
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“I feel at times that the boat is being missed in the League of Ireland around Dublin, in the sense that you come out to the country areas — you go down to Sligo, you come here — and you see the passion, you see the crowds. Without those clubs, there’s no crowds around.
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“It was great that RTÉ covered the match but I’d love if our matches were covered every week. Because I believe it’s a fantastic league.
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"At some point, some marketing person is going to walk in and say, I can move that league to a different level and create a different image out there. I certainly believe it’s there but, look it, maybe people are saying that for 40 years and they might be saying it for the next 40.
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“I don’t know, but I’m passionate about it. We’ve been averaging on Friday nights over 5,000, so it just shows that there’s a fantastic following for the League of Ireland and I suppose there’s a fantastic following for this team.”
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