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The Stade de la Meinau, commonly known as "La Meinau" is a football stadium in Strasbourgmarker, Francemarker. It is the home ground of RC Strasbourg and has also hosted international matches, including one game of World cup 1938, two games of Euro 1984 and the the final of the Cup Winners' Cup in 1988. La Meinau has also been used as a venue for concerts and a mass by John Paul II in 1988. The stadium is owned by the Strasbourg municipality and is rented by the RC Strasbourg. The club is planning to move to a new ground provisionally known as EuroStadium in 2013, which means that La Meinau's future is uncertain.

History

On 1 April, 1914, as Strasbourgmarker was still part of Germanymarker following the Franco-Prussian War, RC Strasbourg, then called FC Neudorf, signed a 300 Deutsche Mark lease to use the Haemmerlé Garten, essentially a pitch surrounded by the woods in the then mainly rural district of Meinau. This would eventually serve as the ground where the stadium was constructed. Between 1906 and 1914, the pitch had been used by another team, FC Frankonia, and several lawsuits were necessary to evict that team from the ground. Construction eventually proceeded and was completed in 1921 with a capacity of 30,000. During the 1938 FIFA World Cup, La Meinau hosted a first round game that saw Brazil eliminate Poland 6-5 after extra-time thanks to a triple by Leônidas who scored one of the very first Bicycle kicks in the history of football. The stadium was rebuilt from the ground up in 1984 for the European Championship and hosted a record 44,566 for the West Germany vs. Portugal match (0-0). La Meinau is a compact, fully rectangular stadium with quarter-corners between the four mains stands (North, South, West and East). In 1988 La Meinau hosted the UEFA Cup Winners Cup final that saw K.V. Mechelen defeat Ajax Amsterdam 1-0. After the tragic events of Heyselmarker, Hillsborough and Furianimarker, safety regulations were reinforced, progressively limiting the number of standing places. This change of regulation severely limited la Meinau's capacity since the stadium had large terraces all-around the pitch. Hence, in 1996, RC Strasbourg had to limit the attendance to 26,000 (seated only) in a stadium originally built for 45,000 when they hosted AC Milan for the 1995-96 UEFA Cup. In 1993, La Meinau was considered as a strong potential candidate to host games for World Cup 1998 by Michel Platini, who organized the tournament, especially because of its proximity to Germanymarker and Central Europe in general. However, the municipality was unwilling to assume the cost of the works necessary to host the World Cup - estimated at 200 millions Francs - citing the other costly projects under way, especially the tram. Since Metzmarker also declined an invitation to host the cup, there were no games in 1998 in the whole Northeastern France. La Meinau was last refurbished in 2001, its current capacity for league games is 29,320.

RC Strasbourg taking on Olympique de Marseille at La Meinau in the opening game of the 2007/8 Ligue 1 season


Records











France's national teams at la Meinau

The France national football team have played three games in Strasbourg.










The France women's national football team has played two games in Strasbourg.







The French national rugby union team has played one game in Strasbourg.

Non-sport events

220x
John Paul II came in 1988
Date Event
9 October 1988 Pope John Paul II mass

On the occasion of Strasbourg's 2000th Anniversary
23 June 1993 U2 Concert

Supported by The Velvet Underground
9 September 1994 Pink Floyd Concert
22 June 2003 Johnny Hallyday Concert

Supported by Yannick Noah


References

  1. Racingstub stadium history
  2. Marcel Scotto, "La Meinau donne des regrets au Strasbourgeois, Le Monde, 17 octobre 1995. Match report
  3. Marcel Scotto, "L'Alsace et la Lorraine privées de Coupe du monde", Le Monde, 5 juin 1998; Antoine Latham, "L'occasion manquée de la ville de Strasbourg", Les Echos, 7juillet 1998
  4. http://mcsinfo.u-strasbg.fr/article.php?cPath=4&article_id=6846
  5. http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/homilies/1988/documents/hf_jp-ii_hom_19881009_stadio-meinau_fr.html
  6. http://www.u2gigs.com/show523.html
  7. http://www.xs4all.nl/~werksman/cale/bio/bio_velvets_1993.html
  8. http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/PFArchives/tourdate.htm
  9. http://www.johnnypassion.com/annees/2003/strasbourg/meinau.html
  10. Idem.


External links




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