NEW Secretary of State for the North, Hilary Benn says Casement Park is "probably the most urgent issue" on his desk.

Mr Benn is in Belfast for a series of engagements with politicians here.

Speaking in Belfast on Sunday, Hilary Benn would not be pressured into saying the redeveloped stadium in West Belfast will be built in time for the Euros in 2028. Doubts remain over funding amid fears Belfast could miss out on hosting matches in Euro 2018.

"There are two issues," he said. "The first is cost, which has continued to escalate. I think originally when it was conceived it was going to be something like £77 million.

"There’s a certain amount of money in the pot but it’s not enough to cover the increased cost.

"The second issue is we are into extra time in trying to get it built in time for the Euros. This is about discussions with UEFA. I am looking into this urgently, it is probably the most urgent issue on my desk.

"One way or another, if it is possible in time for the Euros, Casement Park will be built and as soon as I’m in a position to make that decision, I will. You have to bear with me”.