(Reuters) – Serie A champions AC Milan deserve a world-class stadium that is indicative of their global potential, the founder of U.S. investment firm RedBird Capital Partners Gerry Cardinale said.
RedBird, who are investors in Fenway Sports Group, the owners of Liverpool and the Boston Red Sox baseball team, agreed a 1.2-billion-euro ($1.26-billion) deal to buy Milan earlier this month.
Milan technical director Paolo Maldini said in December that the club’s proposed move, with San Siro co-tenants Inter Milan, from the 95-year-old stadium was needed to ensure future success for both clubs.
Italy’s heritage authority gave the green light to a proposal to tear down Milan’s 1920s-era San Siro arena in 2020, after the teams filed a request to jointly build a new, 60,000-seater stadium.
“A brand of this scale, like AC Milan, should have infrastructure that is indicative of its football prowess and global potential,” Cardinale told the Financial Times.
“We’ve had a lot of experience with stadium projects in the U.S.. Milan and Italy deserve a world-class stadium that houses the best of sports and entertainment on a global scale.”
Italy’s football infrastructure as a whole is in need of renovations and some Italian stadiums have not been updated since the 1990 World Cup, the last major football tournament hosted by Italy alone.
Milan clinched their 19th Serie A title on the final day of the season in May — their first Scudetto in 11 years.
($1 = 0.9510 euros)
(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)