Swarms of fans have taken to O'Connell Street to welcome home the Irish team after their historic World Cup debut in Australia.
Families, players, fans, passers-by and tourists have formed a sea of green on Dublin's main street to welcome home the Girls in Green as they return home from The Women's World Cup – with one point and one goal.
— Josh Crosbie (@JoshCrosbie3) August 3, 2023
Reporting for The Hard Shoulder, Josh Crosbie joined the hoards of supporters as they waited for their favourite players to take the stage.
"It's a time for those fans to show their support for the girls who have done so much to encourage them into the sport," he said.
"They're their role models and to see them in person here this evening, it's an exciting, exciting time for them.
"Many are looking for selfies, they brought along markers for autographs for any chance they get."
Josh spoke to one young female fan, who said her favourite players had made her "pretty proud".
"They inspire us," she said.
"They've done a lot for the girls' teams to encourage us to play," another fan said.
Although the Irish team lost to Canada and Australia, many in the crowd were bursting with pride.
"Even though it didn't happen the way we wanted it to, it was our first World Cup and Katie made us all proud and the whole team made us all proud," said one young footballer.
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For one long-time supporter of women's football, the debut was a special moment.
"They're after doing so well for a nation that is so small," she said.
"[Women] are always second favourites ... you're getting the lads jerseys or you're getting the leftovers.
"It comes from the top down. For the girls, look at the investments that they're getting and where they're going. It's stupid not to invest."
The success of Ireland's team has led to more young people joining football clubs, one young fan said.
"They've encouraged more people to start", she said.
Today FM hosts Dave Moore and Dermot Whelan will take to the stage along with the players to provide music and entertain for the night ahead.
"The support for the tournament in general, but particularly the Girls in Green, was just so incredible to see," Dave told Josh.
"If a tournament like the Euros was on in Poland [or] France, you make the efforts and travelled across – but it's very different than flying halfway around the world.
"To see so many green jerseys, so much support for the girls and green all across the country in three different cities we were in ... It was phenomenal."
Dave said hosting this evening's event is a "huge honour".
"I've been vocal in my support of the Irish women's team but also women's football in general," he said.
"We need to make sure that the facilities are there, not just for the women's national team, but for the underage national teams and then for the clubs around the country.
"There are so many clubs beginning their journey into girls' football and women's football. I think what's really important is that we capitalise on the mood that's there right now."