The now infamous Euro 2012 flag with the slogan 'Angela Merkel Thinks We’re At Work' has raised over €20,000 for charity

RTÉ 2fm’s Tubridy has auctioned off the Republic of Ireland supporter’s flag with the slogan ‘Angela Merkel Thinks We’re At Work’. The sale of the flag that made front covers worldwide and made a nation smile has raised €20,800 for two charities: Crumlin Children’s Hospital and the Oscar Knox Appeal hosted by Neuroblastoma Alliance.

Ryan Tubridy launched the auction of the flag on Friday during a 2fm broadcast live from Eason book store in O’Connell Street, Dublin. Five of the seven Limerick students who brought the flag to Euro 2012 joined Ryan for the programme and by the end of that show substantial bids had already been received. As the programme received further bids from companies such as Flannery’s Pub in Dublin, Betfair, Paddy Power, Expert Hardware and Copper Face Jacks nightclub.

One listener, Oonagh McInerney, a Listowel native now living in Barcelona, bid €6,000 on behalf of her company, Iris R&D. Later, Oonagh and her brother-in-law Martin Digby - who was in Ireland on business from his home in Brisbane, Australia - pooled their resources to put in a winning bid of €15,800.

After the auction had been won by Oonagh McInerney and Martin Digby, Dublin nightclub Copper Face Jacks announced that, even though their bid had not secured them the famous flag, they would nonetheless donate their earlier bid to Crumlin Children’s Hospital and the Oscar Knox Appeal hosted by Neuroblastoma Alliance; resulting in a grand total of €20,800 being donated to these charities.

Ryan Tubridy said: “What we lost on the pitch in Poland, we gained in the stands and terraces thanks to the Irish fans and their sense of humour. The Merkel flag was the funniest joke of them all and now the joke has been put to good use by a bunch of decent lads and a heap of generous listeners. Fans – 1, Begrudgers – nil.”

As for the flag that put a smile on the nation’s face during Euro 2012? Having already travelling to Poland and Ukraine, it will now continue its international tour; visiting Oonagh McInerney’s company offices in Dublin and Barcelona before making its way to Sydney, Australia to hang from the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The flag will finally be presented to Oscar Knox in Belfast.