Real Valladolid set for stadium expansion

Spanish LaLiga football club Real Valladolid is set to expand its Estadio José Zorrilla after reaching an agreement in principle with the city council.

The announcement follows a meeting between Valladolid Mayor Óscar Puente, club president Ronaldo and chief executive Carlos Suárez. Brazilian football legend Ronaldo became the new majority owner of Real, which was founded in 1928, last year and officials this week spelled out their vision for the team over the next 90 years.

The Estadio José Zorrilla first opened in 1982 and currently operates with a capacity of around 26,500. Under the proposed redevelopment, which is subject to a final agreement on financial terms scheduled for March 6, the stadium’s south stand will be completely rebuilt to add a further 4,100 seats, bringing capacity up to around 31,000.

The project will also include the addition of new corporate boxes and comprehensive renovation of the stadium’s façade and access points. Real currently sits 14th in LaLiga having been promoted from the Segunda Division last season. The project will go ahead regardless of the club’s league status. It is expected to cost €25m (£21.9m/$28.3m) and will be carried out in phases lasting between 18 and 24 months.

“It’s not a mere face-lift because it’s going to affect both the inside and the outside of the stadium,” Puente said, according to local newspaper El Norte de Castilla. “It is true that there is no traffic problem but the accesses do have to be up to the task if we are going to improve the interior.”

Puente said the increase in capacity will help the stadium to host international competitions, but added: “It is clear that it will not be a Wanda (Metropolitano) or a San Mamés, but it (the renovation) will be a very important step.”

The stadium is city-owned and Puente added that authorities are open to a possible naming rights deal. The stadium is currently named after Valladolid-born poet, José Zorrilla y Moral. “We are favourable that it occurs whenever somebody approaches to contribute a considerable amount,” Puente said.

Image: Real Valladolid