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GFA and Govt set to finalise agreement on Victoria Stadium soon

Victoria Stadium pitch 16-01-18 (Photo John Bugeja) progress on the development of the site into a category 4 stadium, funds provided by FIFA and ...

With the MTV Calling music festival taking place in late September at Victoria Stadium the GFA has confirmed that an agreement has been struck between the parties for the football season not to be delayed.

The GFA further confirmed to the Chronicle that the Victoria Stadium will be signed over to them in the coming weeks and the pitch at Lathbury would be used during the time of the concert.

In answer to questions following the official announcement of the concert last week the GFA media communication director Steven Gonzalez explained the GFA has “attached certain conditions to the use of the Victoria Stadium by MTV in 2018, including a guarantee that the GFA will be able to use the new facility at Lathbury during the two weeks in September when the Victoria Stadium is unavailable as the result of the MTV event”.

Mr Gonzalez further added that the association had "also sought guarantees that measures will be undertaken by the MTV event organisers to ensure the full protection of the pitch from any sort of damage”.

This was a concern over the state of the pitch following last summer's concert in which debris continued to be found weeks after the concert.

The comments by the GFA come as the association also confirmed that whilst at present the stadium is still under the ownership of the Gibraltar Government, it is expected that stadium will be under their ownership by then.

"The signing over of the Victoria Stadium from HM Government of Gibraltar to the GFA has not happened yet. The GFA expects the transfer to take place in the next few weeks," said Steven Gonzalez.

He further added that "the initial payment of £5 million will take place as soon as HM Government of Gibraltar and the GFA have signed the Development Licence on the property. Pending some final discussions between both parties, this is also expected to take place in the next few weeks."

The GFA has also rejected concerns expressed by some football observers over the resurfacing of the present pitch. In comments to the media the GFA spokesman indicated that there had been "no delays to the project. Works have been stopped briefly as a result of the Christmas and New Year break but have now fully resumed. Domestic football restarts on 1 February."

He also rejected claims that the resurfacing was only temporary for a period of two years explaining "there are currently no plans to replace the pitch after two years. The condition of the pitch will be reassessed once the new Victoria Stadium has been completed and a decision will then be made should any repairs or replacement be required."

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