Cagliari home to be called Unipol Domus


Cagliari Calcio stadium naming rights Image: Cagliari Calcio

The Italian Serie A football club Cagliari Calcio and Unipol recently announced a partnership whereby the insurance group will support the Cagliari football club as title sponsor of its new stadium.

‘Unipol’ stated that the agreement will last for 10 years and will start with the 2021-2022 football seasons (the Serie A season is starting on August 22nd, 2021 and ending on May 22nd, 2022). Unipol will also be the title sponsor for the current temporary home of CagliariSardegna Arena – which will be renamed Unipol Domus until the club’s new stadium goes off the ground, when the title naming will then be decided.

Unipol is one of the biggest insurance groups in Europe and the leading company in Italy in the non-life insurance sector, (especially in the MV and health businesses), with total premiums of approximately €12.2bn, of which €7.9bn in non-Life and €4.3bn in life (2020 figures). Unipol adopts an integrated offer strategy and covers the entire range of insurance and financial products.

Cagliari Calcio, commonly referred to as Cagliari, is an Italian football club based in Cagliari, Sardinia in Italy. The club currently plays in Serie A.

Cagliari has been playing at the temporary Sardegna Arena since the 2017-2018 seasons after the Stadio Sant’Elia (home of Cagliari Calcio) was closed with a view to being pulled down and completely rebuilt.

The 16,416-capacity Sardegna Arena is a temporary football stadium in Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy. Built in 2017, it has been hosting Cagliari Calcio football matches from 2017-2018, since Stadio Sant’Elia was closed and partially demolished in order to build a new stadium.

Serie A is a professional league competition for football clubs located at the top of the Italian football league system.

‘Unipol’ further stated that the partnership between Cagliari Calcio and Unipol Gruppo will help develop this important urban, sporting and social project, seek to enhance the value of the heritage and resources of the territory, encourage growth in economic and cultural terms, and launch the world of Sardinian sport and entertainment onto the national and international sphere.

Carlo Cimbri, Group CEO of Unipol Gruppo S.p.A., stated, “Our Group is particularly pleased to sponsor Cagliari Calcio in the naming of its current and future stadium, to support its ambitions and contribute towards the growth and successes of a legacy that includes sport and acts as a symbol of the identity of the City and Sardinia as a whole.”

Echoing similar views, the President of Cagliari Calcio, Tommaso Giulini, observed, “Having a partner of this calibre at our side lends further proof to how we are committed to making this stadium into something unique and special for our people. It is often said that an ambitious, successful plan also depends on the strength of its supporters, and if that is the case, we are convinced that we are ensuring the best that we could wish for with Unipol on our side.”

‘Cagliari Calcio’ quoted Giulini as stating that “The powers that be are planning to open stadia in Italy to 50 percent capacity. We just hope that there is a rise in this percentage. Opening to 50 percent capacity is also like inching a step forward. Strict COVID-19 protocols will be in place and social distancing will have to be strictly maintained in the stadia stands. Observing physical distancing will reduce the number of fans present. But, going by the upsurge of cases the world over due to the Delta variant, one cannot even expect too much. I just want that the Government should only allow ‘Green Pass’ holders to grace events and, in that case, stadia can also be packed to capacity with ‘Green Pass’ holder fans.”

‘Cagliari Calcio’ further stated that latest development has it that Cagliari has received backing from the City Council to go ahead with plans to build a new stadium on the site of its former home, the Stadio Sant’Elia. This marks a crucial final step for the Sardinian club, which has been intent on expanding on the site of the Sant’Elia since 2015.

Construction work of the new stadium, which is to be delivered by Sportium and Manica Architecture, is due to begin in 2022, with completion expected to be 2024 at the earliest. The stadium will have a capacity of around 25,000, expandable to 30,000.

The 16,000-capacity Stadio Comunale Sant’Elia was a football stadium in Cagliari, Italy. It is best known for having been the home of Cagliari Calcio. It hosted three matches during the 1990 FIFA World Cup™.

Giulini asserted that the new home of Cagliari will be high on the sustainability quotient as it is a hot-button topic today and the new venue will mirror the Sardinian identity.

Sardinia is a large Italian island in the Mediterranean Sea. It has nearly 2,000 km of coastline, sandy beaches and a mountainous interior crossed with hiking trails. The Sardinians are a Romance language-speaking ethnic group native to Sardinia.

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