News of the week: Fight for World Cup final, Latino disputes, Arab wonder

source:; author: Kuba Kowalski

News of the week: Fight for World Cup final, Latino disputes, Arab wonder What's been going on in the stadium world for the last week? England has not escaped trouble and damage, the World Cup final is still being battled out in the USA, while South America is dominated by disputes and uncertainty. We will cover all this and much more in a new format on our website, News of the Week.


What's new in Europe?

Gerard Pique's club in a fix?

After months of discussion, argument and speculation, FC Andorra will have a stadium in... Andorra. Why is that a surprise? Only a few months ago, the former Barcelona star was threatening to move out of the Principality. Although the new location is beautiful, it is still far from being a fairytale. The club will have to say goodbye to Estadi Nacional due to plans to transform the arena into a multi-purpose facility for other sports. Talks are currently underway with the owners of Borda Mateu, a mountainous area a few kilometres from the Andorran capital.

Significant step in the Milan new stadium project

On January 25, a press conference was held, on which the Mayor of San Donato Milanese, Francesco Squeri, officially presented AC Milan's new stadium project. We are moving forward, this operation is feasible, he emphasised with satisfaction. The City Council has already given the green light to the proposed urban development variant. Unlike San Siro, there will be no need for a public debate in San Donato because the area is private. AC Milan would like to move to the new facility before the start of the 2028/2029 season.

Estadi Nacional© stadiumgallery | Estadi Nacional

Will we see a surprising sport at the Bernabeu?

Santiago Bernabéu is set to host an NFL match in 2025. As it turns out, this is unlikely to be the only non-football event to be held at a Real Madrid venue in the coming years. At issue here is hosting of the European Handball Championship final, which will take place in Spain, Portugal and Switzerland in 2028. This would not be the first handball match of such rank to be played in a football stadium. On January 10 this year, the opening match of the European Championship played in Germany took place at Merkur Spiel-Arena in Düsseldorf.

Devastating consequences of storm Isha

Storm Isha has passed over Scotland. After issuing a rare red alert for the north-east of the country, winds of up to 130km/h were recorded during the storm. Ibrox is not the only Glasgow stadium to have been damaged by the bad weather. The venue of Glasgow United, who play in the West of Scotland League, was also affected - the stadium was completely devastated. A collection has been launched via a GoFundMe page to help the club cover costs and get back into action as soon as possible.

Ibrox Stadium© Lesterhobbes764 (CC BY-SA 4.0) | Ibrox Stadium

Problems at Everton Stadium

According to Liverpool ECHO, electricians working at the Bramley Moore dock are involved in a dispute over pay and overtime issues. We leave the site at 3.30pm because that's when the legal eight hours of our work passes. We do everything correctly. We are skilled workers and we want a fair wage, - said one of the workers. Anotherelectrician, who spoke to ECHO about the mass strike, said that "calls for a raise have been ignored".

What's new in the rest of the world?

Battle of three stadiums for World Cup final in 2026

It seemed that the outcome of the race to host the World Cup final was already concluded. Meanwhile, it has emerged that not only has the situation changed, but a third stadium is back in the game. The owner of SoFi Stadium, despite its initial refusal to bring the venue into line with FIFA's requirements and its conflict with the federation, was to submit plans to redevelop the stadium. These changes would bring the venue closer to meeting the federation's requirements for hosting not only the championship itself, but also the final. Who will win the race? We will know the answer on February 4, when in a special broadcast, FIFA will announce the exact schedule of matches and a list of the venues that will host them.

SoFi Stadium© Thank You (23 Millions+) views (CC BY 2.0) | SoFi Stadium

Controversial 'future wonder of the world' on its way?

The Las Vegas of sport. That's what you might call the Qiddiya sports supercity project. The Saudis are determined to make their new facility unique in the world. They present it as the first stadium at the edge of a cliff, the first stadium to combine a sliding pitch, roof and wall with the largest LED wall and the most adaptable stadium. It is to cover an area of 197,000 m². The retractable LED wall is expected to provide views of the outdoors during matches, but together with the retractable pitch, it will make organising a concert a few hours before the game not a problem.

Chile and a problematic consolation prize

Last December, FIFA awarded Chile the right to host the U20 World Cup in 2025. However, the authorities of the local federation do not seem to view the decision as an award, but as a burden. The nomination will force the rebuilding of National Stadium and at least the construction of one training complex for the national teams. In addition to the infrastructural shortcomings, there is the threat of a strike by the Football Players' Association after the number of foreigners allowed at clubs was increased to six and there is no clear plan regarding what the next season will look like. But what is the background to organising major events in South and North America? A shattered mirror, a phone call to Barack Obama, breaking FIFA traditions and more…

Qiddiya Stadium© Populous | Qiddiya Stadium

Dispute at Estadio Azteca will threaten the hosting of the World Cup?

In 1963, a group of people bought private boxes at Estadio Azteca, which was still in the early stages of construction, for 115,000 Mexican pesos. In return, for 99 years from the date of the stadium's inauguration, they were to have unlimited access to football matches, performances, events and other spectacles of any kind held in the Mexican capital. However, the lodge owners are currently unsure how the controversial renovation of the venue planned for 2025 will affect their ownership, or whether FIFA will demand an admission fee during the World Cup. Will the dispute conclude with a happy ending?