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Fifa bans pre-World Cup concerts

Following controversy at Euro 2016, the pitches of World Cup 2018 venues in Russia will be given a two-month rest in advance of the tournament

By Jon Chapple on 19 Oct 2016

Café Bertrand, Stade Velodrome, Marseilles, Wikismasha, Fifa concert ban

Café Bertrand open for AC/DC at the Velodrome in Marseilles

image © Wikismasha/Wikimedia Commons

Football’s international governing body, the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (Fifa), has banned concerts taking place in World Cup stadia ahead of 2018’s tournament in Russia.

Under the new regulations, published on Monday, venues hosting World Cup 2018 matches will be off limits to non-footballing events for two months in advance of the start of the competition. The only exemption is for stadia which have “Fifa’s explicit prior approval in writing”.

World Cup 2018 Stadia will be off limits for concerts two months prior to the start of the tournament

The ruling comes after controversy over the state of pitch surfaces at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and the Uefa Euro 2016 championship in France earlier this year. In June the French national team’s manager, Didier Deschamps, blamed a recent AC/DC show for the poor state of the pitch for his team’s clash with Albania at the Stade Velodrome (67,394-cap.) in Marseilles.

“It’s a disaster, but that’s not surprising,” he said. “If you have an AC/DC concert a month before the European Championships— they’re changing the pitch, relaying the turf.”


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