Stadio Ennio Tardini
Stadio Ennio Tardini, commonly referred to as just Il Tardini, is a football stadium in Parma, Italy, located near the centre of Parma, between the town centre and the city walls. It is currently the home of Parma F.C.. The stadium was built in 1923 and was named after one of Parma's former presidents, Ennio Tardini. The stadium is the nineteenth largest football stadium in Italy and the second largest in Emilia”“Romagna with a capacity of 27,906 spectators, although Il Tardini is presently only authorised to admit 22,885. The stadium is the sixth oldest Italian football ground still in use. The ground underwent significant expansion under the ownership of Parmalat in the 1990s, as the ground's capacity was increased from around 13,500 to 29,050. Relegation to Serie B reduced the capacity to 27,906 although only 22,885 are authorised to enter for all-seater events and even those seats are very seldom all sold. Future expansion plans were made public in Italy's eventually unsuccessfully bid for Euro 2016 and would have made the permanent capacity of the stadium 31,397. Because the Italian national football team has no home football stadium, home matches are rotated around the country and the Tardini has been used for several international fixtures since its expansion. Rugby Parma F.C. also called the stadium home for much of its early existence, including its most successful period in the 1950s, before a move to the Stadio Fratelli Cervi in the next decade. In the late 2000s, the increasing popularity of rugby union in Italy meant that current ground Stadio Flaminio was becoming less viable as a home ground for Italy and the Stadio Luigi Ferraris in Genoa and the Tardini were suggested as alternative grounds as they are in Northern Italy where rugby is more popular. Recently-announced improvements to the Flaminio have increased the likelihood that rugby will stay there.


Early years (1922”“1990)
The Tardini was the idea of Ennio Tardini, who was a graduate in Law, but although much of his work was political his passion was sport. In January 1922, the authorities in Parma granted Parma F.C. a sum of ₤10,000 and Tardini instigated a national competition for the design of the new stadium in February 1922. In order to raise further funds, Tardini sold a plot of land for ₤163,000 to the municipal administration.In September 1922, Parma's committee admitted two projects for consideration: one by Atanasio Soldati and one by Richard Bartolomasi, both architects working in Parma. Soldati's plans looked to architectural simplicity with classical Greek features, while Bartolomasi opted for a more convenient and modern approach. Neither candidate had their work realised. It was architect Ettore Leoni who submitted the final draft for the new stadium, drawing influence from French and German stadia ”“ Lyon's Stade de Gerland in particular ”“ while celebrating the history of Parma. On 26 December 1922, ground was broken on the construction of the stadium and the first stone was laid. The municipal contribution was then raised to ₤100,000 because of the public nature of the project. Tardini died shortly after, on 16 August 1923, but the stadium ”“ originally to be called Stadio Municipalo ”“ would be named in his honour. The stadium originally featured a cycle track which was converted into a clay athletics track in 1935. A modern floodlight system was also installed by Azienda Elettrica Comunale in 1954. External expansion was now impractical as many residential buildings occupied the surrounding area.

Significant renovation (1990”“1997)
The Tribuna Petitot was built by the municipal authorities between 1985 and 1990 with reinforced concrete, but the club was beginning to outgrow its stadium. Promotion to Serie A in 1990 required a legal minimum of 30,000 seats for any clubs playing in that division. The capacity of the stadium at that time was just 13,500. Both viable options were considered: the adaptation of the current stadium of the construction of a new ground in other parts of the city. A consortium filed plans for a new stadium to be built near Baganzola, a few miles outside Parma, on 14 June 1990. The idea was praised by the city's authorities, but political change in the city's halls led to delays in the approval of the plans. Consequently, on 29 May 1991 the club voted by a slim majority to renovate the current stadium. The construction of tbe "English" corner stands ”“ stands which fill in the corners of the stadium and make a rectangular base ”“ was completed in the summer of 1992. The Curva Nord, where the club's most dedicated fans sit, was then re-developed after Parma's triumph in the Coppa Italia in 1992 before the opposite stand was completed a year later. Renovations were finally completed in 1993, having begun in 1991, but On 20 December 1993, further plans to improve the stadium were approved by the city. Local funding reached over ₤12 billion. This time the Tribuna Est was the target. The outcome of the overhaul of the stadium ”“ designed by the architects Stefano Della Santa, Italo Jemmi, Paul Simon, and Fabrizio Fabbri ”“ begun in the spring of 1991 led to a number of issues relating to inflows and outflows of thousands of people. Other problems included the urban location of the stadium and the consequent necessary construction of the stadium within a defined perimeter. This caused difficulties in the provision of a good view from all seats and in safety features. While the most striking differences to the stadium were the increase in capacity and the removal of the running track, amenities were also vastly improved. In 1997, the stadium was authorised to hold around 28,000 spectators, although there were in fact around 29,200 physical seats. In late August 1997, following the installation of yellow seats, the official capacity of the Stadio Tardini was increased to around 29,000 seats. Again in 1997, next to the Tribuna Petitot further work was completed and underneath the stand, Emporium the club's own megastore was opened, selling branded products. 2000 saw the ticket office re-located to the entrance monuments, and a change to the layout of the forum with the creation of a separate restaurant and dining room under the stands.

Further improvements and future plans (1997”“present)
In 2002, an agreement between the Comune di Parma and Parma F.C. saw the club obtain a lease of the stadium for thirty years. The agreement is in place to allow the club to continue to renovate the stadium with the goal of optimising in-stadium services for fans and maximising matchday attendance and revenue, but many of the goals envisioned were unattainable due to the financial crisis of Parmalat who were part of the same corporate group as Parma F.C.. Despite the financial misery, the club sought to continue to work to its goals and the summer of 2006 saw the demolition of the Tribuna East to make way for a new grandstand. Relegation to Serie B in 2008 saw Parma reduce the maximum capacity of the stadium from 29,050 to 27,906, although attendance was capped at 14,975 for the club's stay in the second tier. The stadium was part of Italy's unsuccessful bid for the right to host Euro 2016 and plans to increase the capacity to 31,397 (30,225 for the tournament) and roof the corners and ends of the stadium were submitted as part of the bid. It would have hosted matches in the group stage and a round of 16 match and the cost of the renovation would have been €40 million had Italy been selected to host the tournament and Parma been chosen as one of the nine host cities, whittled down from the twelve nominated. UEFA praised Parma's ground transport links as "above the benchmark", despite this being perceived as a weakness of the stadium by the club owners, but airport links were criticised as the only airport-stadium link was to be by bus, although the assessment of Parma Airport itself was "slightly above the benchmark". In the summer of 2010, €830,000 was spent on the renovation of the stadium. The Tribuna Est' was re-roofed, access was improved with the installation of readers for Parma card holders, a giant screen was installed, improvements were made to drainage, media boxes in the Tribuna Centrale Petitot were built and a new hospitality area was invested in. There are plans to expand the east grandstand, which would increase the capacity to 30,000, while the tenants also continue to work to solve problems of parking and traffic management on matchdays. President of Parma Tommaso Ghirardi has talked of his dream of renovating the stadium and Pietro Leonardi of the plans to buy the stadium from the relevant municipal authorities. Alternatively, the club may decide to move location.

Structure and facilities
The Tribuna Petitot consists of a building on three levels: the dressing room is housed on the ground floor; the first floor is home to the club's administrative offices, as well as various newsrooms and reception rooms and the honours room; the second floor is used for surveillance, security services control and journalists. The building is 103 metres long, 30 metres wide at the base and 14 metres high. The floors and facade were made with metal frames anchored to the precast concrete pillars. The curved facade is made of asbestos cement, aluminum frames and glass surfaces. The structures of the stands are reinforced by concrete beams, columns and tiles. At the end of the work carried out by companies Bonatti and ATI, the total area of the facility is 36,725 square meters and the stadium measures 105 x 65 meters. The new stand can hold about 8,000 seats, including 348 in boxes and 148 in the press gallery. Stands can accommodate 7,500 spectators each, and the old grandstand, with its distinct enlargement "temporary" 7,000. Inside the stadium are the Emporium, where fans can buy official Parma F.C. merchandise, and the hospitality area, which includes fourteen corporate suites. Here is a breakdown of the capacities of each of the four stands of the stadium:

International football matches
The Italian national football team does not have a national stadium and many different venues are used by its teams at all levels. One of these venues is the Stadio Ennio Tardini.

Italy national team
The Tardini has hosted five full Azzurri international matches, all of which Italy have won. The stadium is one of just over 50 used by the Italians for home games in their history and is one of the fifteen most-used. The first two matches played at the Tardini were pre- World Cup friendlies contested by managers that had previously managed Parma F.C. ”“ Arrigo Sacchi and Cesare Maldini. The other three matches have been played during the three most recent World Cup qualifying campaigns. The victory over Hungary was Italy's last match of the campaign and secured them qualification to the 2002 World Cup. The Belarus match was played earlier in the campaign, but triumph in Parma did send the Italians top of their group. The most recent international played at the Tardini was a dead rubber. In June, the venue will host Italy's next home match in its pursuit of qualification for Euro 2012.

Italy under-21 team
The Tardini has hosted two Azzurrini international matches. The second of these was the second leg of a two-legged affair, which ended 2”“2, a result enough to see the Italians out on away goals after the first leg ended goalless.

Stand Seats Tribuna Centrale Petitot (Petitot Main Stand) 7,178 Tribuna Est (East Stand) 2,635 Curva Nord (North End) 6,500 Curva Sud (South End) 6,572 Total 22,885 Date Opponent Score Competition 27 May 1994 Finland 2”“0 Friendly 22 April 1998 Paraguay 3”“1 Friendly 6 October 2001 Hungary 1”“0 2002 FIFA World Cup qualification ”“ UEFA Group 8 13 October 2004 Belarus 4”“3 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification ”“ UEFA Group 5 14 October 2009 Cyprus 3”“2 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification ”“ UEFA Group 8 3 June 2011 Estonia UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying Group C Date Opponent Score Competition 28 January 1987 East Germany 1”“0 Friendly 9 May 1990 Yugoslavia 2”“2 1990 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship quarter-final

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