In June 2015, UEFA announced that the Football Association of Wales’ (FAW) bid to host the 2017 Men’s UEFA Champions League (UCL) and 2017 UEFA Women’s Champions League (UWCL) Finals had been successful.
The UCL Final will be played on Saturday 3rd June, 2017 (kick-off 19.45hrs) at the National Stadium of Wales. The UWCL Final will be played two days earlier on Thursday 1st June, 2017 at the Cardiff City Stadium.
With just one year to go until the world’s single biggest sporting event in 2017 comes to Wales, preparations are well underway to ensure that both the 2017 UCL and UWCL finals are successful and memorable events.
A Local Organising Committee (LOC) responsible for the delivery of both of the 2017 Finals has been assembled by the FAW and includes individuals with experience of staging large global sporting events including past Champions League Finals, Rugby World Cups and Olympic Games. As part of its detailed planning, a delegation from the Cardiff 2017 LOC attended the 2016 UEFA Champions League Final in Milan and spent four days shadowing UEFA and the Milan 2016 LOC Project Team as they prepared for the event.
Chief Executive of the FAW, Jonathan Ford, said:
“The scale of these finals cannot be underestimated. The 2016 final in Milan delivered an estimated economic impact of £45m to the City of Milan, was viewed by an estimated 200million people in over 200 countries and attracted over 300,000 people to the UEFA Champions Festival (Fanzone) … the atmosphere across Milan was incredible and one we eagerly look forward to replicating in Cardiff next year.
“The 2017 UEFA Champions League Final will be the biggest sporting event to have ever been staged in Wales and we are determined to deliver the best Men’s and Women’s UEFA Champions League Final experience.”
Cardiff 2017 Project Director, Alan Hamer added;
“With one year to go, the eyes of the footballing world will now turn to Cardiff to successfully organise one of the World’s biggest sporting events. It’s vital that we have a detailed understanding of all aspects of the event, and ensure no stone is left unturned in our planning.
“We will be working tirelessly with all stakeholders to ensure we stage a successful and memorable event in Cardiff next year, an event that the whole of Wales will feel both part of, and proud of.”
The delegation that travelled to Milan met with UEFA and the Milan 2016 LOC project team responsible for delivering this year’s Men’s and Women’s UEFA Champions League Finals and included representatives from the FAW, The National Stadium of Wales, Cardiff City Stadium, the Welsh Government, Cardiff County Council, SW Police and Cardiff and Bristol Airports. Included within the areas observed were transport, safety & security, accommodation and tourist information, match operations, hospitality and fan engagement.
Mark Williams, General Manager at The National Stadium of Wales (the official name of the stadium for the staging of the 2017 UEFA Champions League Final) said:
“The UEFA Champions League Final is the single biggest sporting event in the World for 2017 and we’re extremely proud to adding next year’s final to a long list of memorable sporting occasions at the stadium. The venue operations team are well versed in delivering major events. The UEFA Champions League will bring some new and exciting challenges and we’re already working behind-the-scenes with the FAW and UEFA to ensure we’re in great shape for Cardiff 2017.”
The name ‘National Stadium’ dates back to 1982 and the 53,000 capacity National Stadium, Cardiff Arms Park which hosted Welsh rugby internationals and other events through to 1999, when the iconic Millennium Stadium first opened its doors.
The majority of tickets will be made available to the two finalists. Tickets will also be made available through a public ballot in March 2017.