WEMBLEY PITCH TO BE RELAYED AGAIN

Wembley Stadium is set to relay the pitch surface for the 10th time in three years.

Stadium officials have blamed the harsh winter weather as freezing temperatures and heavy snowfall have contributed to the poor playing surface.

The pitch had been widely criticised following the Carling Cup Final on Sunday and England’s friendly International match against Egypt on Wednesday.

A Wembley spokesperson said: "The ground staff did very well to stage the Carling Cup despite conditions in the build-up and employed the use of a canopy to shield the pitch from the rain on Saturday night and Sunday before kick-off.

"They worked round the clock and could not have done more. Conditions were better ahead of the England match but the pitch was still not good enough for our liking.”

Sir Alex Ferguson has blamed the pitch for the injury sustained by Manchester United striker Michael Owen that will see him miss the rest of the season.

The pitch will be replaced the weekend before the Johnstone's Paint Trophy Final on 28th March.

The Wembley spokesperson added: "Ultimately, this pitch has not fared well through what has been an extremely harsh winter and it needs to be replaced.

"This will be the 10th pitch since opening but the stadium caters for football and non-football events so replacing the pitch more than once during the course of a year is a reality of a multi-purpose venue."

Posted on 06/03/2010