AC Milan targets U.S. stadium model


Gerry Cardinale confirms plans of American-style stadium for AC Milan Image: Mannion

AC Milan will build a new “American-style” stadium in the North Italian city, according to Gerry Cardinale founder of the club’s owner RedBird Capital Partners.

The FT said Cardinale confirmed the desire to build a 70,000 seat stadium, based on the U.S. model, for the club at the Business of Football Summit in London.

Cardinale wants the design of the new venue to include many amenities common to U.S. stadia, as well as an adjacent mixed-use development.

Serie A club AC Milan recently acquired a 256,000 square meter plot in the San Donato Municipality to the South-East of the city, 15 kilometers from its current San Siro Stadium home.

The San Siro, whose official name is the Giuseppe-Meazza Stadium, is an iconic 80,000-seater structure built in 1926, but which no longer meets the needs of AC Milan or Inter Milan, which it shares the venue with.

The new stadium will be built in the shape of a rectangle with rounded curves and it will be a mixed-use development featuring hotels, offices, museums, restaurants, an official club store, two-level parking for 3,500 cars, and a 3,000-seat auditorium for shows and cultural events.

Meanwhile, the Municipality of Milan’s last-ditch efforts to redevelop the San Siro Stadium, at a cost of €300 million, in their bid to keep both Inter Milan and AC Milan at San Siro is still generating interest.

However, both Inter and AC Milan seem firm on moving forward with their Rozzano and San Donato plans.

Inter’s new stadium in Rozzano would also have a capacity of 70,000 and be designed to provide the best comfort and an exciting and immersive experience for all fans. It would also contribute to the development of the city and have excellent connections to the centre of Milan, integrating with existing infrastructure.

Outside the stadium, a sports ‘town’ and welcome areas for fans and everyone attending the district would be created; all of this would be accessible for 365 days a year and complement the surrounding park.

Speaking at the Business of Football Summit, Cardinale also confirmed that he has much bigger aspirations and wants to expand the stadium development model to the rest of Italy.

He said, “I’m going to create a company that’s going to build this stadium [for AC Milan], and then, frankly, I want to take that company and have it go build stadiums for all the other teams in Serie A.

“Because on one hand, I wear my AC Milan hat and we want to win the championship. On the other hand, I want to help Serie A narrow this gap to the Premier League.”

A lack of infrastructure investment since the 1990 World Cup has hit Italian soccer hard and the nation is now lagging behind other European leagues in terms of revenue, including the Premier League, Germany’s Bundesliga and Spain’s La Liga.

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