Italy set to dump Stadio Flaminio
April 1, 2011
Rome's Stadio Flaminio has been Italy's home since they joined the Six Nations in 2000 © Getty Images
Italy are set to switch their Six Nations fixtures from Rome's Stadio Flaminio to Florence's Stadio Artemio Franchi after reportedly running out of patience with the owners of their ageing home ground.
The Stadio Flaminio has been the team's Six Nations home since they joined the Championship in 2000 and most recently played host to their shock victory over France last month. But the decaying facilities and the owners alleged failure to re-vamp the ground have led to the Italian Rugby Federation (FIR) moving the national side to Florence that hosted its first Test against Australia in November.
"The Italian rugby federation board has decided home matches in the Six Nations will be transferred to the Stadio Artemio Franchi in Florence in the absence of a definitive and rapid resolution of the problems with the Stadio Flaminio," the FIR said in a statement.
Italy sold out the 80,000-seater San Siro in Milan for a New Zealand Test in 2009 but that venue is used almost every weekend during the Serie A football season that clashes with the Six Nations.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
"This team deserves to be recognised as the greatest of all time." Huw Richards looks at Gareth Edwards' final match for Wales
The two leading contenders for the best modern open-side flanker go head to head in Paris on Saturday. John Taylor assesses the tale of the tape
Move over, Castro - from falling off a chair to stepping off the team bus, Scrum Sevens recounts some of the strangest rugby injuries ever
Martin Gillingham on the latest from France and why the national side can learn a thing or two from Top 14 side Bordeaux Begles