Italian Serie A football club Atalanta has today (Tuesday) reached an agreement to buy its home ground, the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia.
The club, which is based in the city of Bergamo, is now expected to draw up plans to redevelop the stadium in the coming months.
The club was named as the preferred bidder for the 21,000-seat stadium back in May. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but the Football Italia website said that Atalanta would pay €8.6m (£7.8m/$10.2m) to own the facility, and an extra €2.6m to cover renovation work carried out at the stadium in 2015.
Atalanta president Antonio Percassi said: “The Stadio di Bergamo has always been the home of Atalanta and Atalanta fans. It is a great pleasure to have finally become the owners as well. This is a fundamental step for the present and the future of our club. Today Bergamo makes history, every Bergamo (resident) must be proud of it. We have made a great investment with the goal of making the stadium more modern and welcoming for our fans.”
Mayor of Bergamo Giorgio Gori added: “The choice of the administration … was found in the brave investment of Atalanta, who, after an extraordinary season, wanted to give their fans the chance to see a dream come true. It was a very complex journey, of which I would particularly like to thank the Valesini councillor and the communal offices involved, as well as the Percassi family. Now, together with Atalanta, we can finally dedicate ourselves to the project and then to the construction site. The new stadium, which we firmly wanted to keep in town, will also be an opportunity to improve and revive an entire part of our city.”
Since being promoted to the top-tier Serie A in 2011, Atalanta had achieved a string of bottom-half finishes. However the club enjoyed an impressive 2016-17 campaign, finishing fourth to qualify for this season’s Uefa Europa League.