Netherlands stadium closed as stand cave in



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Nijmegen stadium stand collapse Image: Ryan Talhouk (@el_yanoo) Twitter

A small section of a stand at Dutch top-flight club NEC Nijmegen’s Goffert Stadium in Nijmegen (a city in Mid-Eastern Netherlands) collapsed on October 17th as fans of visiting Dutch professional football club Vitesse Arnhem celebrated their team’s 1-0 victory. There were no reports of any injuries. The stadium has since been closed down.

The ‘stuff’ stated that Arnhem players were celebrating on the pitch in front of their fans when the lowest section of the stand collapsed. About 35 people were standing on the section that was affected.

NEC Nijmegen, commonly NEC, is a professional Dutch association football club based in Nijmegen, a City located in the province of Gelderland (Netherlands). They play in the Eredivisie, the top-tier of Dutch football, following promotion from the 2020-2021 Eerste Divisie.

SBV Vitesse, widely known as Vitesse, is a Dutch professional football club located in the municipality of Arnhem, in the province of Gelderland. Established on May 14th, 1892, Vitesse is one of the oldest professional football clubs in the Eredivisie. Since 1998, the club has played its home games at the 34,000-capacity GelreDome in Arnhem, Netherlands.

The 12,500-capacity Goffert Stadium is a football stadium in Nijmegen, Netherlands, located in the Goffertpark. It is home to football club NEC. The stadium was opened on July 8th, 1939 by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands.

The ‘stuff’ further stated that one player put his hands on his head when it happened before other players punched the air when it became apparent that nobody had been hurt.

Fans quickly clambered upwards, away from the affected part of the stand.

NEC Director Wilco van Schaik stated that, as far as he knew, nobody was injured – “There was a container under the stand and that prevented anything more serious.”

Nijmegen Mayor Hubert Bruls said he was “shocked”.

Added Bruls, “Luckily, as far as we know, nobody was injured. I want an investigation as quickly as possible into what happened here.”

Vitesse midfielder Riechedly Bazoer was among players who were celebrating with fans.

Stated Bazoer, “It is shocking. Luckily … everybody survived.”
 

Stadium closed

The ‘Xinhua’ stated that the Goffert Stadium will remain closed for the time being.

The closure of the stadium has been imposed by the Nijmegen Region Environment Agency (ODRN) and NEC Nijmegen fully agrees with that. The cause of the collapse is not yet known. The Municipality of Nijmegen, which owns the stadium, has ordered an investigation into the incident.

The ‘Xinhua’ further stated that the ODRN itself also investigated which checks have been carried out in the Goffert Stadium not very long back. The stadium was declared safe in January this year.

NEC Nijmegen’s next home game is scheduled for October 31st against the Eredivisie team FC Groningen. It is unlikely that this match can be played in the Goffert Stadium.

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