Balaidos Stadium

The Estadio Municipal de Balaídos (Spanish pronunciation: ; "Balaídos Municipal Stadium") is an all-seater football stadium in Vigo, Spain. It is the home of Segunda División club Celta Vigo.

Location

Balaídos is located on the Avenida Balaídos, in the district of Coia. It occupies the block bounded by Avenida Balaídos, Rua Val Minor, Avenida Alcalde Portanet and Rua dos Olimpicos Galegos.

Structure

The stadium comprises four stands: Tribuna, Río, Gol and Marcador, giving a total capacity of 31,800. The record attendance at the stadium is 45,000 which was set in a match between Celta and Getafe in 1982.

The Tribuna is a two-tiered stand. The upper-tier is known as Tribuna and lower-tier is Preferencia.

The Río stand is two-tiered and is the newest of the stands (built in 1981). The upper-tier is known as Río Alto and lower-tier is Río Bajo. The stand is named Río (River) as it was built over the original course of the Lagares river.

History
Construction

In September 1924 a group of local businessmen took the first steps towards the construction of the stadium by buying the 75,000 m2 on which the stadium would be built. The first job they faced was diverting the river Lagares. Two years later these businessmen would create the company Stadium de Balaídos, S.A., who would carry out the actual construction work on the new stadium.

Inaguration

Balaídos was inaugurated on the 30 December 1928. The stadium was blessed by the archpriest of Fragoso, Father Faustino Ande.

The inaugural match was played at 3:00pm between the hosts, Celta Vigo, and the basque team Real Unión. The ceremonial kick-off was made by Carmen Gregorio-Espino, the daughter of former mayor Adolfo Gregorio Espino.

Celta Vigo's Graciliano was the first player to score a goal in the new stadium, in a 7-0 win.

1982 FIFA World Cup

Balaídos underwent its second large-scale renovation in preparation for the 1982 FIFA World Cup; The Rio stand was completely re-built, the Gol end was added to the stadium whilst the Tribuna stand and Marcador were renovated.

The stadium hosted Italy's group fixtures in the 1982 FIFA World Cup. The other Group 1 games were also held in Galicia, at Riazor, A Coruña.

2003–04 UEFA Champion's League

In the 2002-03 season Celta qualified for the UEFA Champions League for the first time in their history. Their celebrations were cut short when the stadium failed the subsequent UEFA stadium inspection required to host their fixtures. It was briefly mooted that Celta might have to play their home fixtures at Porto's Estadio do Dragao. The necessary upgrades were paid for by the local authorities.

Nuevo Balaídos

Due to the poor state that Balaídos finds itself in, the idea for a New Balaidos (Galician: Novo Balaídos, Spanish: Nuevo Balaídos) has been proposed several times in the past decade.

2003

In 2003, the then president of Celta Vigo Horacio Gómez presented an ambitious project for a new stadium and the surrounding area. The 95,000m2 redevelopment would include a shopping centre, a hotel and sports centre. It was approved by the financiers, Caixanova, but was rejected by the local authorities - due to the strong opposition from Javier Riera, the Director General of the nearby PSA Peugeot Citroën factory, because of the increased disruption it would cause in the area.

2018 FIFA World Cup

On 15 September 2009 the deputy mayor of Vigo city council, Santiago Domínguez, presented Vigo's candidacy to the Royal Spanish Football Federation as a possible venue for the joint Portugal-Spain bid for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. This, the third proposal for a New Balaídos, by architect Jesús Llamazares Castro and engineering consultants ACXT Idom, would involve the complete rebuilding of Balaídos stand-by-stand.

The newly reformed stadium would eliminate the running track around the pitch and bring the stands closer to the action, increasing the capacity from 31,800 to 42,381. The estimated cost of the rebuilding is €123 million - 104 spent on the actual stadium and the remaining 19 million on the construction of underground parking and regenerating the surrounding area .

The stadium would be built in four stages over a 5 year period (2012–2017):

Balaídos, although one of 24 candidate cities across Spain, would only be competing against Riazor (A Coruña), Estadio Carlos Tartiere (Oviedo) and El Molinón (Gijón) for the one stadium likely to be given to the North-west region of Spain.

On 13 April 2010 the Royal Spanish Football Federation included Balaídos on the official list of candidate cities that was presented to FIFA.

Building Activity

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