Keep on Hooping: A TV Documentary about Shamrock Rovers and the lack of stability in the League of Ireland

Cotter, Ruairi (2016) Keep on Hooping: A TV Documentary about Shamrock Rovers and the lack of stability in the League of Ireland. masters thesis, Griffith College.


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The aim of the dissertation is to examine the journey of Shamrock Rovers in the League of Ireland. The country’s most successful club with 17 league titles and 24 FAI Cups have gone from winning four titles in a row and playing in front of crowds of up to 45,000 people, to being relegated to the country’s second tier, and back to winning back-to-back titles in less than 30 years. The aim of the dissertation is to give an in-depth look into the rich history of Shamrock Rovers by breaking it down into key eras for the club over the past 115 years such as their early years, their reign of dominance in Milltown and the pain that came with leaving their famous home ground in 1987, their 22-year homeless period and the jubilation that came with moving into their new home in Tallaght. I will compare Irish football to football in Iceland. With a population of only 330,000 people, Iceland’s national team has gone from strength to strength over the last decade, while their league has gone up in Uefa’s official rankings, surpassing the League of Ireland on its way. The dissertation will uncover the differences between the two countries in terms of how the game is managed and developed, how the governing bodies spend their money and why football in both countries appears to be moving in opposite directions. It is logical to compare Ireland to Iceland because the two countries’ leagues were on par in terms of Uefa ranking less than 10 years ago, but Iceland have moved ahead since. This presents an ideal opportunity to examine why and how the two countries have moved in opposite directions since. Although Iceland has a much smaller population than Ireland, it has fewer sporting competitors. Football in Ireland is in competition with rugby, Gaelic football and hurling, so when you take the pool of players remaining for football alone, it is not too dissimilar to what Iceland have available. The dissertation will look to find answers to the questions that fans, scholars, journalists and players have been asking for years: how can Ireland’s biggest clubs suffer such mixed fortunes over a short space of time? Where does the lack of stability in the league come from? And what can be done to improve the league in terms of quality of football, facilities at each ground, and the number of fans coming through their turnstiles?

Item Type: Thesis (masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords: documentary, television, Dublin, football, history
Divisions: Faculty of Journalism & Media Communications > MA in Journalism & Media Communications
Depositing User: Mr. Dean Waters
Date Deposited: 07 Jan 2020 15:31
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2020 15:31

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