STADIUM MOVE PLANNED FOR ROMA

AS Roma have revealed they plan to move to a new stadium within the county's capital during 2016.

Club president James Pallotta said the new stadium will be a 60,000-seater arena to be built at Tor di Valle, inside the capital.

“This is an incredibly exciting day for all of us here and hopefully for all of Rome and all Roma fans around the world,” Pallotta revealed.

“This announcement has been part of our original plan for AS Roma to be a championship-calibre team for the foreseeable future. Rome deserves it. We hope Francesco Totti can score the first goal there.”

The club’s chief executive officer Italo Zanzi said the plan was to have the fans close to the action during matches.

He said: “We anticipate the capacity to be around 55,000-60,000 – enough to host the Champions League final while maintaining an intimate feel and offering the fans a special experience.

“We also want to stress that it will be privately financed and based on current legislation.”

Roma currently play their fixtures in the Olympic Stadium - which they share with city rivals Lazio.

The stadium is intended primarily for football and managed by the country’s National Olympic Committee.

The Olimpico is primarily for football and has also become the home ground of the national rugby team and Italy’s national athletics venue.

Gianni Alemanno, the Mayor of Rome, told reporters at a news conference that it will take a year for all bureaucratic procedures to be expedited. 

"In a year's time we will be able to obtain all of the permits required for the project to get off the ground," he said and added that "we could do it in eight months only, if the law regulating the building of stadiums were approved."

Francesco Totti - the club's top-scorer and most capped player in history along with being the current captain - said: “On behalf of the city of Rome, I thank those who allowed the realisation of a dream that Roma fans have had for a long time.

“Our supporters deserve their own stadium, entirely red and yellow.”

Posted on 31/12/2012