Euro 2012: Northern Ireland

Adam McDonnellAssociate Director of Political and Social Research
June 29, 2012, 3:00 PM UTC

60% of Northern Ireland adults are watching Euro 2012, 25% supported Republic of Ireland team

In this year’s UEFA European Football Championship (Euro 2012) Northern Ireland finished fifth out of sixth in its group during the qualifying stages meaning the squad didn’t make it through to the tournament. Yet despite this, our recent poll suggests that the majority of Northern Irish adults have tuned in to this year’s tournament - suggesting that a passion for football takes precedence over local pride.

Our poll found that:

  • 60% of Northern Irish adults watched the Euro 2012 matches
  • Men were the most likely to watch (71%)
  • The competition proved surprisingly popular among women of which 52% watched Euro 2012 matches.
  • 57% will be watching the matches at home
  • 31% of men 18-24 will watch at least some of the tournament in a pub
  • 47% of men aged 18-24 will not/have not watched the Euro

Another poll, conducted at the end of last year, asked Northern Irish adults which team they would be supporting. Our results found that twice as many Northern Irish adults intended to support the Republic of Ireland than England.

  • 25% said they would be backing the Republic of Ireland
  • 13% chose England as their favoured team for the tournament
  • 12% said they wouldn’t support any team

As the Republic of Ireland exited this year’s finals at the group stages and as England lost in the quarter finals, the majority of Northern Irish football fans look somewhat neutral towards teams in the closing stages. Indeed, only 2% of respondents of our poll said they were backing any of the remaining teams in the competition.

Survey details and full results: Watching Euro 2012 - Northern Ireland

Survey details and full results: Team support Euro 2012 - Northern Ireland