For the second year in a row the Aer Lingus College Football Classic game will not take place at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

The Illinois v Nebraska clash had been scheduled for Saturday 28 August, but it's been confirmed that the game will instead take place at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, USA.

Last June the meeting of Notre Dame and Navy in the Irish capital was pulled but those two universities, as well as Illinois and Nebraska, remain committed to fulfilling the fixtures at the earliest possible opportunity. 

The announcement comes after months of consultation between the Irish government, medical authorities and key representatives from both Illinois and Nebraska, with all parties confirming their commitment to protecting the health and well-being of all involved during the Covid-19 pandemic.

"Whilst today's announcement is another difficult blow for the Irish Hospitality and Tourism Industry, as organisers, we are fully engaged with our stakeholders on both sides of the Atlantic and remain hopeful, that with the right support, we will be in a position to re-launch the Aer Lingus College Football five-game Series in the coming months," said Padraic O'Kane, Director of Irish American Events Ltd.

"We are at an advanced stage of negotiations with high-profile universities for the 2022 and 2023 fixtures. However, the five-game series business model post-Covid-19 has additional costs and risks which we are currently working through with our public and private stakeholders and partners.

"The games attract on average 25,000 American visitors to the country, staying on average seven nights and the Illinois v Nebraska game alone was set to be worth an estimated €70m to the Irish economy.

"We are determined to start the series at the Aviva Stadium in 2022."

Ticketholders will be contacted by their purchase provider in the coming days.