Stade Auguste Bonal
|Cost||FRF 114 million|
|Address||Impasse de La Forge, 25200 Montbéliard|
Stade Auguste Bonal – stadium description
This stadium’s history is almost as long as the club’s. First wooden stand for 1,000 people was raised in 1931 and by 1935 capacity grew 10 times to see FC Sochaux’s first championship. For years it had been growing with running track and artificial lighting added (1957), but since 1960s the structure started to deteriorate.
It wasn’t until 1990s that a complete reconstruction was carried out as the stadium was clearly obsolete despite several attempts to improve its standard. First the running track was removed and construction started in 1997. It took a long 35-month process to rebuild the ground, all because the club had to play here during the entire reconstruction, having at least 7,000 capacity throughout.
With double-tiered stands with cover partly supported by wooden beams, the stadium was seen as one of the most modern in France in 2000 and earned its first national team game in 2006, followed by one more, this time of the rugby side. Since then several concerts also took place here.
The stadium’s name dates back to just after WWII when Auguste Bonal was honoured for his resistance against Nazis. Being the club’s sports director he was also working against the occupants and was killed after refusing to cooperate in 1945.
France: FC Sochaux may leave its stadium
In March, French media reported that Ligue 2 club FC Sochaux could be left without a stadium at the end of the month. Fortunately, negotiations to extend the contract until the end of the season have been completed successfully. However, the future of the stadium is still under a big question mark.
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