News Column

Spanish Cup Final to Be Played at Real Madrid

March 8, 2013

The Spanish cup final, between neighbours Real Madrid and Atletico, will be played on Friday May 17, the Spanish football federation said Friday.

The venue will be Real's Estadio Bernabeu, because it has a larger capacity than Atletico's Estadio Calderon.

Jorge Perez, the federation's general secretary, said: "The logical thing is that the final be played in Madrid, in the stadium with the biggest capacity."

The Bernabeu has a capacity of 80,000, which is 35.000 more than the Calderon. The Calderon is due to be demolished shortly, with Atletico moving out to a new ground in the capital's north-eastern suburbs.

Real would have preferred the final to be played in Barcelona's Camp Nou or Valencia's Mestalla, because the whites have actually lost five of the seven finals they have played in the Bernabeu.

Atletico president Enrique Cerezo had orignally asked for the Calderon as the venue, claiming that it was Atletico's turn to host the final because last all-Madrid final, in 1992, had been staged at the Bernabeu.

However, online polls showed that most Atletico fans actually preferred the Bernabeu to the Calderon because Atletico have won all three Madrid derby finals played in Real's stadium, in 1992, 1961 and 1960.

Curiously, the last time that Atletico beat Real, back in 1999, was at the Bernabeu. In contrast, Real won the only all-Madrid final to be played in the Calderon, in 1975.

Spain does not have a national stadium. During the Franco dictatorship, between 1939 and 1975, most finals were played at the Bernabeu, though Real did not do well in them.

Each club will be allocated 35,000 tickets for their fans for the final.

Real have won the cup 18 times - the last occasion being in 2001 - Atletico nine times, the last time being in 1996.

Holders Barcelona have won the cup a record 26 times, followed by 23 for Athletic Bilbao.

Real beat Barca in the semi-finals this year, while Atletico disposed of Sevilla.

Source: Copyright 2013 dpa Deutsche Presse-Agentur GmbH

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