Villa Park choice resolves FA’s Community Shield problem
22 May 2012
The Football Association (FA) has named Villa Park as the host stadium for the 2012 Community Shield after Wembley’s Olympic commitments ruled out the game’s traditional venue.
Villa Park, the 43,000-seat home of Barclays Premier League club Aston Villa, will stage the clash between league champion Manchester City and FA Cup winner Chelsea on August 12. The traditional curtain raiser for the new English football season will take place the day after the London 2012 Olympic football final, which is being played at Wembley.
Olympic regulations ruled out the staging of the Community Shield at Wembley in such close proximity to the climax of the London 2012 football tournament and FA general secretary Alex Horne admitted securing a new host proved a challenge. “Villa Park is one of English football’s most iconic grounds and has a wonderful tradition of hosting some of the game’s biggest matches,” he said. “Once we knew the Olympic football schedule, we worked hard to secure a suitable alternative venue for The FA Community Shield 2012 and are delighted that Aston Villa have agreed to host the season’s traditional curtain raiser.”
Aston Villa CEO, Paul Faulkner, added: “We are delighted to be hosting the 2012 Community Shield and we look forward to welcoming fans from Manchester City and Chelsea to Villa Park. All football fans will know that Villa Park is an iconic stadium with wonderful facilities and a rich heritage of staging England internationals, FA Cup semi-finals and big-occasion games.”