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Extremely rare Irish Free State jersey from 1927 set to sell for astonishing amount at auction

A jersey from the Irish Free State football team worn in a 1927 match is set to go to auction later this year - with an expected sale price of over €20,000.

The modern-day side flies the FAI banner, and will do so over the next week in UEFA Nations League clashes against Scotland and Armenia.

But 100 years ago, things were very different - as between 1924 and 1936, the team competed as the Irish Free State, which would morph into the FAI in the mid-1930s.

READ MORE: Catholics outnumber Protestants in Northern Ireland for first ever time, census shows

As such, memorabilia from the early days of the Irish side is extremely rare - be it programmes, tickets, or the holy grail of jerseys.

This Irish Free State jersey is from 1927 and could be yours in the very near future - if you stump up €10,000 (McTear's Auctioneers)

One lucky collector will be able to get their hands on the match-worn jersey of Christy Martin from a 1927 tie with Italy B in an auction in the coming weeks.

The shirt, which is being offered for sale by a descendant of Christy Martin, is the first of its kind to ever come to auction. Indeed, experts at McTear’s Auctioneers believe it could be one of only a very small number still in existence.

Commenting on the auction specialist James Bruce, said: "Not only are these items of great footballing significance, but of momentous historical importance too, coming from a time of great political upheaval for the nation of Ireland.

"This instance in particular can be viewed as singularly important, the shirt with the tricolour and Gaelic text being one worn for only three games between 1926-29, before the team reverted to their more iconic Shamrock design. It is not often pieces of such monumental significance come for sale."

Christy Martin’s jersey features an embroidered shield shaped crest inscribed 'Saorstát Éireann' (Irish Free State) bordering an Irish Tricolour. The deep emerald green cap is embroidered in gilt bullion ‘Ireland v. Italy 1927’, and with a maker's label for Elvey's Limited.

The jersey and cap will feature in the auction More than a Game: Sporting Medals & Shirts, on Friday 14 October at McTear's.

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