Riyadh’s iconic King Fahd International Stadium is set to undergo major changes as Saudi Arabia pushes on with its bid to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup, said a report.
Now, as the kingdom enters a new era with the materialisation of its ambitious Vision 2030 transformation programme, King Fahd International Stadium is receiving a substantial upgrade as it eyes securing what would be the jewel in its crown of landmark events, reported Arab News.
It is being nominated to host the opening and final matches of the 2027 AFC Asian Cup, with the kingdom leading the contenders to host Asia’s premier national team competition.
By the time 2027 rolls around, those same stands will accommodate 80,000 fans, making the ground with the iconic roof in the shape of 24 tents the joint-largest football stadium in the GCC, stated the report citing project architect Musab Badahdah.
"The athletics track surrounding the pitch will be removed and the pitch itself will be lowered by eight meters, allowing for a supplemental lower tier of stands to be built, adding over 20,000 seats to the current capacity," said Badahdah on the eve of the AFC delegation’s inspection visit to the site.
The team arrived in Saudi Arabia after completing a visit to Iran, one of the three other nations in contention to host the 2027 AFC Asian Cup.
Similar visits to Qatar and India will follow, as the Asian football governing body continues its evaluation process ahead of it selecting the host of its premier national team competition, which will next take place in China in 2023.