An independent report conducted on the degraded lawn of the Ernst-Happel stadium in Vienna recommended Wednesday that Austria-France should remain on Friday (8:45 p.m.), subject to UEFA approval, when a deep hole had been observed. Monday evening.
“The report clearly recommends that the game takes place as planned,” Austrian FA chief executive Bernhard Neuhold said on Wednesday evening. “Nevertheless, we have to wait for a return from UEFA,” he added.
The lawn under the magnifying glass
A deep hole in the lawn of the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna was spotted on Monday during Austria-Denmark, leading the Austrian authorities to carefully examine the lawn and call a meeting before receiving France on Friday in the League of Nations.
Representatives of UEFA, the Austrian Federation and the stadium services met on Wednesday evening and “a pitch analysis report, carried out by external experts, was sent to UEFA for approval” , organizer of the event, said Mr. Neuhold. Asked by AFP, UEFA had not communicated a decision on the fate of the meeting on Wednesday evening.
Nearly 45,000 spectators expected
The Austrian authorities have mandated in recent hours a meticulous analysis of the lawn, X-rays, using a special machine. The federation explained the phenomenon by “a significant increase in the level of groundwater in the neighboring Danube, caused by the heavy rains observed overnight from Sunday to Monday”.
Stage of the Euro-2008 final, the Ernst-Happel-Stadion will be sold out for the reception of the French world champions, with up to 44,800 spectators expected during this meeting counting for the 3rd day of the League of nations.