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I grit my teeth as I pull the strap of the helmet tight underneath my chin. I’ve got my boots on and the laces knotted while my shoulder pads are strapped on nice and secure. All I need now is to put on my jersey and I’ll be ready to watch the Superbowl.

Look, I know you probably know who won, but I don’t. This is the first chance I’ve had to sit down and watch it and I’ve successfully avoided hearing anything about it until now. I know Beyoncé sings and there was a cool trailer for the new Star Trek movie but apart from that I know nothing.

It’s pretty exciting, it’s almost like watching it live. I don’t even know which teams are playing.

I haven’t ever really been into American Football, it was never on TV where I was growing up and no teams near me played it. But this year with The Gathering Dublin I’ve had to learn all about it. You see, there’s a few tournaments running in South Dublin, so I’ve been preparing for them by learning everything I can about American Football! All the games are happening in Tallaght Stadium and are being run by the Irish American Football Association.

There’s the Atlantic Cup which is happening on the 29th & 30thof June. Then, on the 20th of July the Shamrock Bowl (which includes some Irish college teams) comes to Tallaght Stadium. Last but not least, on the first of September there’ll be a college match with some American teams happening on the grounds that came first in the Airtricity League Pitch of the Year in 2012.

So I have a lot to prepare for if I want to be up to speed by the time the games begin. First things first, it’s Superbowl time! Oh, I got an email from my mother, I’ll just check that and then watch the game.

What’s it say? “Go Ravens?” What does that even mean?

Wait, aren’t Ravens one of the teams playing in the Superbowl?

Does that mean...?


For more information on the games occurring in South Dublin, check out

Minister Michael Ring TD, signs and IAFA football with players from Irish teams
at the launch of The Gathering Dublin.