Stadium Guide

Euro 2016 Stadium Guide

A major tournament returns to France for the first time since the 1998 World Cup. Football Italia looks at the venues for this summer’s tournament.

Bordeaux

Located in southwestern France, the port city is best known as the world's wine capital, with the wine economy in the Bordeaux metropolitan area bringing in €14.5bn per year. The city is known as "La perle d'Aquitaine" [The Pearl of Aquitaine], and "La Belle Endormie" [Sleeping Beauty] due to its high number of historical buildings. The city is home to 362 monuments historiques with some buildings dating back to Roman times.

Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux

While construction on the new stadium began in 2013, the project was not completed until 2015 as protests from residents delayed the building work. Known as Stade Matmut Atlantique for sponsorship reasons, the new arena was officially opened with a league match between Bordeaux and Montpellier on May 23, 2015.

Capacity: 42,115
Opened:  2015
Home team: Girondins de Bordeaux
Construction cost: €168m
Matches: 11 June – Wales v Slovakia
               14 June – Austria v Hungary
               18 June – Belgium v Republic of Ireland
               21 June – Croatia v Spain
                 2 July – Quarter Final

Lens

With a population of under 33,000, Lens is the smallest host city for this summer's tournament. Initially a fortification from the Norman invasions, Lens became an important industrial centre when coal was discovered in the surrounding area in 1849. Sadly, the discovery would later have tragic consequences when 1,099 miners, including children, were killed in the Courrières mine disaster.

Stade Bollaert-Delelis

Originally known as Stade Félix-Bollaert, Stade Bollaert-Delelis was opened in 1933. The ground has undergone several renovations, with its expansion to 51,000 seats for Euro 1984 briefly making it the biggest stadium in France.

Renamed as Stade Bollaert-Denis in 2012 after the death of long-serving mayor André Delelis, the stadium was renovated again for this summer's tournament, forcing RC Lens to play their home matches in Amiens for 2014-15.

Capacity: 38,223
Opened: 1933
Home team: RC Lens
Matches: 11 June – Albania v Switzerland
               16 June – England v Wales
               21 June – Czech Republic v Turkey
               25 June – Last 16

Lille

The most northerly of all the host cities, Lille is situated close to the border with Belgium. It's believed the area has been inhabited since as early as 2000 BC, with local legend putting the foundation of the modern day city at 610 BC. Lille was the European Capital of Culture in 2004, an honour it shared with the Italian port city of Genoa.

Stade Pierre Mauroy

Named for a former mayor of Lille and Prime Minister of France, the new arena replaced the Stade Grimonprez-Jooris and Stadium Nord, both home to Lille OSC, but neither of which met UEFA regulations, forcing Les Dogues to play at Stade Félix-Bollaert [see above]. The stadium officially opened on 17 August 2012 with a 1-1 draw between Lille and Nancy

Capacity: 50,186
Opened: 2012
Home team: Lille OSC
Construction cost: €282m
Matches: 12 June – Germany v Ukraine
               15 June – Russia v Slovakia
               19 June – Switzerland v France
               26 June – Last 16
                 6 July – Semi-Final

Lyon

France's third-largest city [after Paris and Marseille], Lyon is a major centre for banking, as well as for the chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. The city is famous for the Fête des lumières [Festival of Lights] where every house in the city places candles on their windowsill in gratitude to the Virgin Mary.

The local football team, Olympique Lyonnais won Ligue 1 seven times in a row between 2002 and 2008.

Parc Olympique Lyonnais

Since replacing Stade Gerland in January of this year, the new arena has been a good luck charm for Lyon. In 10 Ligue 1 games at the new stadium, l'OL have won eight and drawn two, scoring 30 and conceding eight. That run saw them rise to second in the table, securing a place in the Champions League group stages for next season.

Capacity: 59,186
Opened: 2016
Home team: Olympique Lyonnais
Construction cost: €415m
Matches: 13 June – Belgium v Italy
               16 June – Ukraine v Northern Ireland
               19 June – Romania v Albania
               22 June – Hungary v Portugal
               26 June – Last 16
                 6 July – Semi-Final

Marseille

France's second-largest city, the port is the most southerly host for Euro 2016. The French national anthem, La Marseillaise, is named for the city, after volunteers from Marseille sang it while advancing on Paris on 30 July 1792, during the French revolution.

As France's second city, Marseille has an intense rivalry with Paris, as evidenced by Ligue 1's biggest match, Le Classique, when Olympique Marseille meet Paris Saint-Germain. Aux armes, citoyens...

Stade Vélodrome

The Stade Vélodrome was initally opened in 1937, but underwent extensive renovations for this summer's tournament. Since its expansion, the stadium's record attendance is set at 65,148 from a match against PSG in April 2015. Despite the costs of renovation, mayor Jean-Claude Gaudin has refused to sell the naming rights for the iconic stadium.

Capacity: 67,394
Opened: 1937 [renovated 2014]
Home team: Olympique Marseille
Construction cost: €150m
Matches: 11 June – England v Russia
               15 June – France v Albania
               18 June – Iceland v Hungary
               21 June – Ukraine v Poland
               30 June – Quarter-Final
                 7 July – Semi-Final

Nice

Located just across the Italian border, Nice was the subject of power struggles between the Kingdom of France and the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia for much of its early history. As such, the city also has an Italian name, Nizza. The Treaty of Turin in 1860 definitively gave the city to France, and Nice became an important strategic port. The celebrated French artist, Henri Matisse, died in the city in 1954.

Stade de Nice

Inaugurated with a match between Nice and Valenciennes in September 2013, the Stade de Nice - known as Allianz Riviera for sponsorship reasons - replaced the Stade Municipal du Ray, which holds just 18,696.

Capacity: 35,624
Opened: 2013
Home team: OGC Nice
Construction cost: €245m
Matches: 12 June – Poland v Northern Ireland
               17 June – Spain v Turkey
               22 June – Sweden v Belgium
               27 June – Last 16

Paris

France's capital and largest city, Paris is famous the world over for its art and architecture, as well as being one of the world's fashion capitals. Notable Parisien landmarks include the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame cathedral and the Arc de Triomphe. Unusually, the city's sewer system matches up exactly with its street plan.

Parc Des Princes

Originally opened as a multi-purpose venue on 18 July 1897, Parc Des Princes is home to French champions Paris Saint-Germain. Formed by a merger of Paris FC and Stade Saint-Germain, PSG moved into the stadium in June of 1973, after renovations had taken place to adapt the stadium specifically for football. The stadium is named for the royal hunting ground it was constructed on.

Capacity: 48,712
Opened: 1897
Home team: Paris Saint-Germain
Construction cost: €13m
Matches: 12 June – Turkey v Croatia
               15 June – Romania v Switzerland
               18 June – Portugal v Austria
               21 June – Northern Ireland v Germany
               25 June – Last 16

Saint-Denis

Located 9.4km from the centre of Paris, Saint-Denis will host the final of Euro 2016. Saint-Denis is closely associated with French royalty, with almost every French king buried in the famous Basilique royale de Saint-Denis.

Stade de France

Although Stade de France is the national stadium, that is not the source of its name. The ground is in fact named for Île-de-France, the region in which it is located. A friendly between France and Spain was the first match at the stadium, and Les Bleus lifted the World Cup at Stade de France in 1998, beating Brazil 3-0 in the final.

Capacity: 81,338
Opened: 1998
Home team: French national team
Construction cost: €290m
Matches: 10 June – France v Romania
               13 June – Republic of Ireland v Switzerland
               16 June – Germany v Poland
               22 June – Iceland v Austria
               27 June – Last 16
                 3 July – Quarter-Final
               10 July - Final

Saint-Étienne

The capital of the Loire region, Saint-Étienne will host four matches at this summer's tournament. Named after Saint Stephen, the city is home to France's most successful football club, with AS Saint-Étienne having lifted the title a record 10 times.

Stade Geoffroy Guichard

Built on land donated by retail magnate Geoffroy Guichard, the stadium was built in the 'English Style', with four separate stands rather than one large bowl. Stade Geoffroy Guichard hosted six matches at the 1998 World Cup, including Scotland's 3-0 defeat to Morroco, and England's penalty loss to Argentina.

Capacity: 42,000
Opened: 1930 [Renovated 1984, 1988, 2014]
Home team: AS Saint-Étienne
Construction cost: €25m
Matches: 14 June – Portugal v Iceland
               17 June – Czech Republic v Croatia
               20 June – Slovakia v England
               25 June – Last 16

Toulouse

Known as la Ville Rose [the pink city] for its pink terracotta architecture, Toulouse is the centre of the European aerospace industry, being home to Airbus and the Toulouse Space Centre, the largest space centre in Europe.

Stadium Municipal de Toulouse

Toulouse is almost certainly France's rugby capital, and the French national rugby team play their matches in the city. The stadium will host Italy-Sweden on June 17, as well as one of the Last 16 ties.

Capacity: 33,150
Opened: 1937
Home team: Toulouse FC
Matches:  13 June – Portugal v Iceland
                17 June – Italy v Sweden
                20 June – Russia v Wales
                26 June – Last 16