The San Siro Stadium in Milan is a house hold name around the world if you follow football that is. The name is the area in which the stadium resides and has no other meaning really.It is the home of Inter and AC Milan and is what makes it unique as I could not see the likes of Manchester City and United ever sharing a car park let alone a stadium.
It is quite funny how the teams came about and it was a disagreement at AC Milan around how the club signed foreign players. This is how Inter became a club and a bit like a Hard Fork I suppose. AC Milan built the stadium with the president footing the bill, a certain Piero Pirelli from Pirelli tyres. They sold the stadium to the Milan council in 1935 and Inter moved in sharing with them in 1947.The stadium has a capacity of around 80 000 spectators.
The stadium was built in the 1920's and has now come to the end of the road and needs not updating, but being demolished and replaced with something more modern. I had no idea it was 100 years old as it certainly doesn't look it as so many add ons must have happened from then until now. The idea is to have a modern stadium with separate training facilities for both the teams. Gone are the days of not requiring a state of the art facility as look at what Tottenham have achieved with their stadium.
Football is big business an being able to cash in on keeping your supporters at the ground for longer is the key to more profits. The facilities have to attract every type of budget from your average Joe who wants to watch the game with a beer or someone who would like some fine dining and make a day or an evening of it.
The main money spinner is the real estate though as the stadium is the focal point around which there will be a $1.5 Billion mini city built. The city of Milan owns the land that this is on and prying that away may be difficult. It is interesting to know that this is also a joint venture between both club owners who are Chinese and American businesses. It would be interesting if both parties were pushing for this or why one didn't go on their own. This was AC Milan's stadium originally so Inter should in theory get their own.
Being built in 1920 it is only 100 years old and has no architectural features that need protecting. They don't have the problem Fulham Football Club has with Craven Cottage stuck in the one corner.Talk is that some piece will be saved just to show something old reflecting in the new build and keep some history.
The Cathedral Plan
What is interesting is both teams have submitted new plans that have to be decided on by the Milan Council. Both are very different offering a different approach. One is an older type looking building with character and the other is the Rings of Milano. The rings will change color depending who is playing at home. Red for AC and blue for Inter.
Rings of Milano
Whatever replaces the old stadium it has to be great as the San Siro stood the test of time and I thought it looked great with the 4 main corner pillars. I still prefer the old stadium if I was to be honest as the design is still more eye catching than the modern ones.