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Official Review by Martin McNelis, Stadium Journey Regional Correspondent
Dalymount Park is a famous north Dublin soccer ground in the Phibsborough district of the city that opened in 1901. Known locally and generally by football fans as 'Dalyer,' it is home to League of Ireland side, Bohemian FC. The team is often known by their nickname of 'the Bohs' or 'the Gypsies.' The stadium has hosted, among other things, Irish internationals, the first in 1904 versus Scotland and the last being a Friendly against Morocco in 1990.
It has hosted a number of national domestic cup finals through the years, and has provided a neutral venue for other club's fixtures. Famous names to have graced the Dalymount pitch out with any Irish stars include Gullit, Van Basten, Best, Pele, Zidane, to name but few. It is looking a bit run down internally, but homely and quite distinguished at the same time, with its four large floodlight pylons visible from some distance.
The last upgrade the ground had was in 1999, when the current Main Stand was built. However, the club have major plans to redevelop Dalymount Park in conjunction with Dublin city council, after speculation in 2015 that it would be demolished, with Bohemians moving to a purpose built facility in a different location. The proposed venue will be used as a public amenity, which would suggest the possibility of an artificial pitch. Local rivals Shelbourne were rumoured to be part of a stadium ground share, but they are not part of the immediate plans.
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Food at Dalymount is served from a reasonably sized snack bar that has a variety of hot and cold drinks, with a slightly healthier menu in comparison to a lot of football grounds. They offer baguettes, chicken and cheese wraps, chips with cheese or curry sauce, and chicken burgers, instead of the standard pies and burgers. All items are priced from 4 or 5 Euros each.
Soft drinks served in cartons or cups, hot drinks including tea and coffee are served in polystyrene cups. There are also two bars under the Main Stand selling a variety of beers, wines and spirits.
Entry to Dalymount is through two narrow lanes, one in the middle off the main North Circular Road, the other to the left around some local housing. Over recent years the capacity has been reduced to around 3,200 due to health and safety reasons. The crowds vary from 1,000-2,000 for home games, and occasionally more for bigger fixtures.
There are two internal bars at either end of the Main (Jodi) Stand, the only licensed part for alcohol. For most games this is the only end that is opened. It has four supporting pillars, two of which may slightly obscure your view. The Des Kelly Carpets Stand behind the goal (on the left) is not used unless for a rival Dublin club like Shamrock Rovers, St Patrick's Athletic or even Shelbourne. It has both an open area on the left and covered section on the other.
Across from the Main Jodi Stand is car park space (on the left) from when half of this was demolished a few years ago. The other half is open air seating and is seldom used, if at all. There is a large sign here that declares; "Dalymount Park The Home of Irish Football." On the halfway line there is a small tv gantry and both the dugouts are also situated in front of this area of the ground. Behind the other goal (to the right of the Main Stand) is open terracing known as the Tramway End which has been condemned for a number of years. A limited number of home fans are allowed to enter here before kickoff to hang their flags over the crush barriers.
At half time there are a couple of local youth teams consisting of both boys and girls who come onto the pitch for a quick kick about. There are also some travel announcements for up and coming fixtures and the half time draw details disclosed where fans can win cash prizes.
The Main Stand tends to be the only one open and your view will be slightly impeded by two of the four supporting pillars.
The ground is situated not far from the city centre, but it is still a very busy area, so allowing extra time for public transport or getting parked if you're taking the car is strongly recommended.
There is a busy street over the back of Dalymount, with a number of pubs and shops. This includes a large Tesco store, McDonald's, chip shop, and a Chinese take away.
If you are staying overnight, then you may consider the Charleville Lodge Hotel at 268-272 N Circular Rd, Phibsborough. The hotel is barely five minutes walk from Dalymount Park. Prices range from 75-100 Euros depending on room size and breakfast options.
Glasnevin Cemetery and Museum is great for anyone interested in Irish history, and is situated ten minutes walk away.
The club receives gates of 1,000-2,000 for home games with more for bigger fixtures against other Dublin rivals.
Bohemian's fans have a group known as the 'Rude Boys' and they have several flags tied to the crush barriers in the unused terrace behind the right hand goal. At certain points of the game, notably before kick off and after a goal, a section of the support get the atmosphere going with some singing. They will also react to any chants from the away fans.
The number 120 bus to Dalymount is regular from the city centre and a 20 minute walk if you fancy that. Drumcondra station is the closest train station and is a 10 minute walk away.
There are a lot of local permit holders only, so parking slightly further away from the ground is advisable. All gates/turnstiles are access from the Jodi Main Stand. You hand over your cash and you are given a small match ticket for entry.
With only the one stand open there is still reasonable room to get to the toilets, bar and food outlet, or if you fancy changing seats.
The match day prices are 15 Euros entry fee for adults, 10 Euros for concessions and students, and 5 Euros for children. The programme is 4 Euros and there are also half time draw tickets available to purchase to win cash prizes.
The standard of the match can be questionable, but does provide some entertainment and value for money.
The club shop is in a small cabin to the left of the Jodi Stand selling a variety of club shirts, jackets, jumpers and club merchandise including calendars, mugs and pens. The more than 100 years of history of this ground is also worth an extra point.
Dalymount Park is a very prestigious landmark and home to one of Ireland's most well known clubs. The new investment will hopefully benefit not only the club, but the local community and the League of Ireland. Soccer in Ireland requires massive investment and often plays second fiddle due to competing against the very popular Gaelic football and hurling (GAA), not to mention the big interest in the English Premiership.
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66 Phibsborough Rd
Phibsborough, Dublin 7
+353 1 830 5505
160 Phibsborough Rd
Phibsborough, Dublin 7
+353 1 830 1441