Newly-formed Major League Rugby franchise the LA Giltinis has agreed a long-term deal to play its home games at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

The deal has been signed ahead of the Giltinis’ debut in the competition this year. The team’s first game at its new home will be against the New England Free Jacks on March 20.

The LA Coliseum is one of Los Angeles’ most historic stadiums, having opened in 1923. The stadium was a host venue during the 1932 and 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles and is now mainly used as a college sports venue.

The Giltinis were formed last year following the success of Los Angeles’ World Rugby Sevens Series event. The team’s general manager is Adam Freier, a former international for Australia.

Freier said: “The game of rugby is built upon a rich history. It prides itself on its values and tradition, but continues to look at ways to innovate. This is exactly why we are partnering with such an iconic and celebrated sporting arena in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, ‘The Greatest Stadium in the World’ as it is widely tagged.

“Performance and entertainment will drive what we do here at the LA Giltinis. From our performance on the field, to game-day presentation right through to our broadcast, we will be innovative, daring and always have our fans front of mind.

“We want to appeal to rugby fans of all ages and we’ll be working hard to attract plenty of new ones in our local community. We have developed and will keep updating COVID-safe plans to ensure our fans can enjoy an experience they have been eagerly awaiting. It’s going to be fun.”

The Giltinis’ debut at the LA Coliseum will mark the return of rugby to the stadium following a 65-year absence.

The 77,500-seat LA Coliseum will be used as a host venue when Los Angeles hosts the Olympics for a third time in 2028.

Image: Mike Quach/CC BY-SA 3.0/Edited for size