Warsaw’s Euro 2012 stadium ready for 1st match
All security concerns have been addressed and the stadium that
will host the opening match of this year’s European Championship is
ready to stage its first game, Warsaw’s mayor said Tuesday.
The announcement was a major breakthrough for a stadium that is
modern and imposing in its size and design, able to seat 58,000
people and with a roof that can open and close – but which has been
beset by delays and questiosn about its safety.
Poland will play Portugal in a friendly at the National Stadium
in Warsaw on Feb. 29. The venue will host Poland’s opening game of
Euro 2012 against Greece on June 8.
The stadium was due to host a Poland Super Cup match earlier
this month but it was scrapped when police said they were unable to
guarantee security because of communication problems inside the
Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz said the problems have been
addressed and the police have now given their approval for the
stadium to be used.
The head of the Polish football association, Grzegorz Lato, said
he was hopeful that the stadium would also stage another event
before it is handed over to UEFA on May 9.
”I am really happy that the national representation will
finally play at the National Stadium and that we will be able to
test how everything works there,” Lato said.
The stadium was opened Jan. 29, six months behind schedule,
following a series of glitches in construction that began in 2008.
It was build on the site of a communist-era stadium that in its
final years was used as a huge market place.