By Chris King • 08 October 2021 • 18:15
The England game in Andorra is in jeopardy after a fire broke out there this afternoon, Friday, October 8, at around 4pm local time. Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions squad is preparing for their World Cup qualifier against the tiny principality, in the 3,300-seater Estadi Nacional in the capital Andorra la Vella.
A team of welders is inside the ground constructing a metal gantry for the TV broadcasters to use tomorrow, Saturday, October 9. It is thought that sparks possibly set fire to the structure, which went up in flames, with clouds of black smoke filling the air.
From the gantry, flames then spread to the two adjacent dugouts, as well as setting fire to the artificial pitch. The fire actually spread onto the playing area before it could be extinguished.
Local firefighters arrived on the scene and the fire was out by 4.17 local time, but now a pitch inspection will need to be made, to assess the damage and confirm whether the surface is playable, and if it is also safe. Confirmation is yet to be given, so it is a waiting game for the England squad while officials make their decision on tomorrow night’s match.
Gareth Southgate and Kieran Trippier had only just completed their media interviews when the fire broke out. The England squad her earlier been out on the artificial pitch training, as reported by thesun.co.uk.
UPDATE: It has since been announced that the match will go ahead as planned.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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