Two days away from Austria-France, the federation is working for … the big hole in the grass

THE SPORTS CHAIR – Ahead of the match against the Blues on Friday evening in Vienna, the Austrian federation has to deal with an unprecedented turf problem.

Ubuesque. And a sequence that made the rounds on social media. A deep hole in the grass of the Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna, detected on Monday during Austria-Denmark, led the Austrian authorities to meticulously examine the grass and to convene a meeting before receiving France on Friday, AFP learned with the local federation. .

The TV footage is impressive: after the final whistle of Austria-Denmark (1-2) on Monday evening, the Danish players had a fight with the organizers in front of a huge hole observed in the center circle, sinking their legs at least 30 centimeters. on the ground. “I don’t know what happens to this fan stadium“He released the Danish midfielder Pierre-Emile Höjbjerg after the meeting, in statements reported by the press.

Challenged by this situation, the Austrian federation has been active since Tuesday to repair the defects of its lawn, against Austria-France on Friday (20.45 h). “The X-ray floor is being examined with a special device to see if other cavities may appear“A spokesman for the federation told AFP.”The analysis is expected to be completed by Wednesday evening“while a”meeting between UEFA (organizer of the League of Nations), the federation and the stadium servicesis scheduled for Wednesday evening at 6:30 p.m., supposedly bringing “More detailsabout the situation.

Heavy rain in Vienna in recent days

The explanation for the formation of this hole “It is currently being surveyed, but there is likely to have been a significant increase in groundwater levels on the nearby Danube, caused by heavy rains observed during the night from Sunday to Monday.“We said from the same source.”The water exerted upward pressure on the lawn, which caused a cavity to form, leading to a hole.The federation also announced that stadium services will provide 1,000 square meters of land. “in case the top layer of the lawn needs to be changed quicklyif new holes are detected. “The bottom layer has thickenedusing a roller machine, he also adds.

On Tuesday, Federation President Bernhard Neuhold told local media he could not, for the time being. “state that there is no other danger“.”There can always be scenarios that can lead to the cancellation of a match“On Monday evening, Austria also faced a major power outage at its stadium, which delayed the start by an hour and a half.”The disruption affected neighboring districts of Vienna and was caused by faulty power lines. Technicians say Sunday’s heavy rain caused the problem“The Austrian federation told AFP. Rain is still expected in Vienna on Thursday and Friday.

Phase of the Euro-2008 final, the Ernst-Happel-Stadion will be sold out for the reception of the French world champions, with up to 44,800 spectators expected during this accounting match for the 3rd day of the League of nations.

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