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Guide to Euro 2008 stadiums

By unknown | May 26, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

VIENNA - Guide to the stadiums hosting matches at Euro 2008, which is being co-hosted by Austria and Switzerland and runs from June 7-29:

VIENNA - Guide to the stadiums hosting matches at Euro 2008, which is being co-hosted by Austria and Switzerland and runs from June 7-29:

Austria Vienna - Ernst Happel Stadium: Will host the final with a larger than normal capacity of 51000 thanks to additional stands being put on the athletics track. Has had ß37million spent on refurbishing it. It is named after legendary former Austrian player Ernst Happel, who also guided the Dutch to the 1978 World Cup final. Has hosted four European Cup finals.

Klagenfurt - Wortherseestadion: Built in just under two years this 32000 seater stadium that cost roughly ß57million will be reduced to 12000 after the finals. Has earned the nickname "The UFO" from locals and supporters of football side Karnten. There have been fears raised over fan trouble with Germany, Croatia and Poland all playing group games there.

Salzburg - Stadion Salzburg Wals-Siezenheim: Home to the heavily funded Austrian championship side Red Bull Salzburg, it will host all of titleholders Greece's group games. With a capacity of 30500, it is one of the more picturesque grounds and spectators will not go hungry as it has several restaurants in its vicinity. For those of a more cultured taste they won't have to go far to visit the birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Innsbruck - Stadion Tivoli Neu: A town more used to hosting Winter Olympic Games - in 1964 and 1976 - it has seen a rare success for Austria of late in the footballing world as they beat African giants Ivory Coast 3-2 in late 2007. Has increased its capacity to 30000 and will host games of Spain, Sweden and Russia.

Zurich Switzerland - Letzigrund Stadion: The building of this stadium went just like the clockwork that the Swiss are renowned for, from cuckoo to watches. It was built in a year at an overall cost of around ß60 million. Italy, France and Romania will play at the ground, which got the nod ahead of the more established Hardturm, which hosted the 1954 World Cup.

Basel - St Jakob-Park: Not exactly the place you would associate with an old people's home, but 107 of Switzerland's senior citizens are lodged next to the stadium. Nonetheless it is the biggest stadium the Swiss are holding matches at with a 42000 capacity and will host the opening match and one of the semifinals. Cost nearly ß140 million when it was built in 2001 and comes from the same architects that built the Olympic Stadium in Beijing.

Berne - Stade de Suisse Wankdorf: Normally it is known as the managerial hot seat but at this 32000 capacity stadium one spectator is literally set apart from the others as he or she is in the one red seat in the house as a mark of honour while the rest of the seats are in black and yellow. Those with a sweet tooth - more than likely to be Dutch as they are playing all their group games there - should not be disappointed as the factory that makes Toblerone is a stone's throw away. In its previous identity it played host to the 1954 World Cup final where West Germany downed the favourites Hungary.

Geneva - Stade de Geneve: Multipurpose stadium which has seen both football and, amazingly given Switzerland's lack of rugby knowledge, a European Cup match between Irish giants Munster and French outfit Bourgoin. Will host Portugal, Turkey and the Czech Republic group matches. Has a capacity of 30000 and cost around ß42 million to construct. - Sapa-AFP


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