Flagship Euro 2012 Stadium finally unveiled

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Poland’s showpiece venue for UEFA Euro 2012 was unveiled on Sunday, marking the final stadium to be completed ahead of this summer’s tournament.

Warsaw’s National Stadium was originally scheduled to open in June 2011, but its progress has been delayed due to concerns over the design of features such as the evacuation stairs. However, the 58,000-seat venue marked its opening ceremony with a music festival on Sunday. “I am very happy that the National Stadium has been finally unveiled,” said Poland’s tournament director, Adam Olkowicz, according to UEFA.com. “It’s the biggest Polish venue for this year’s final tournament.”

Olkowicz added: “On June 8, we will witness the opening ceremony here followed by the first match between Poland and Greece. As of now, all of the Euro venues in Poland and Ukraine are ready and we are working hard to prepare them for this big festival of football.”

Built at a cost of Eur473 million, the National Stadium lies on the site of the old Tenth Anniversary Stadium, which had opened in 1955. The old venue held its last intentional game in 1983, after which it fell into disrepair. The new stadium will be the cornerstone of Poland’s staging of Euro 2012 and is set to host six games, including the opening match and one semi-final.

The National Stadium is one of five venues constructed especially for this summer’s tournament in Poland and Ukraine, along with the Arena Gdansk, Municipal Stadium Wroclaw, Arena Lviv and Kyiv’s Olympic Stadium. The Municipal Stadium Poznan and Metalist Stadium have been redeveloped, while Shakhtar Donetsk’s Donbass Arena opened in August 2009.

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