History of the stadium

History of the stadium

The first information about the stadium dates back to 1926, when the clubhouse of AC Slovácké Slavia was built. However, the ČSK Uherské Hradiště asked the council of the royal town for the possibility to use the town land for football matches and trainings as early as 14 March 1905. In the same year the first international match with Cricket Vienna was played. In 1926-1927 the pitch changed its location twice and the fence had to be dismantled, which cost the club 10,000 CZK! In 1934 AC Slovácká Slavia celebrated its 15th anniversary and 30 years of unorganised football in the town. The national champion SK Slavia Praha came to the celebrations with many silver medalists from the 1934 World Championship in Italy. They won easily against Uh. Hradiště 8:0. In the 1930s the first wooden grandstand was built. It was enlarged and roofed during the 1950s. By 1960, concrete galleries were built around the football field with a cinder athletic track. A brick tower was built with a clock, scoreboard and, next to the tower, toilets for spectators. The reconstructed stadium was used from August 1960. The appearance of the stadium was preserved until 1978, when the old wooden stand was demolished. In the spring of 1979 the construction of a new stand for 1,000 spectators began. This stand was opened in April 1980.

After the arrival of the T.I.C. company to the club, investments in the reconstruction of the stadium began. First, in 1993, the inadequate announcer's booth on the tower was replaced with a lighted information board. Inside, the offices were renovated and in July 1995, after promotion to the top flight, additional seating was added to the main stand thanks to a metal structure. At that time, the capacity of the main covered stand was 1,150 seats and a few dozen standing places. On Tuesday 2.8.1995 the first league match was played against the champion AC Sparta Praha. More than 12,000 spectators watched this match and Slovácká won a very good result 2:2, when not long before the end they were leading 2:1. Further improvements to the auditorium were planned, such as a new stand between the stadium and the cinder pitch, the construction of a hotel complex and other improvements to the grounds.

The great flood of July 1997 completely destroyed the playing field and the entire football club's facilities. In September-November 1997 the playing field was reconstructed. Contaminated soil was removed, artificial irrigation was installed and new turf was sown. The first match on the new turf was played on 22 August 1998 in the MSFL against the reserve team of Boby Brno. The match was watched by only 400 paying spectators, who were not very satisfied with the 2:2 draw. On 13 May 2000, the Slovácké Slavia men's team played their last championship match at their stadium before the total reconstruction of the entire venue.

On 1 July 2000, the Uherské Hradiště club merged with its long-time rival from the right bank of the Morava River to form one strong first league club, 1.FC Synot. The latter had to wait until Saturday 18 October 2003 to play a first league match in Uherské Hradiště, when they welcomed Sigma Olomouc and saw them off with a 3:2 win. However, the grand opening of the new stadium took place a week earlier, when 1.FC Synot invited the famous Borussia Mönchengladbach. The latter left with a surprising 3:2 defeat. The first player to christen the new stadium with his opening goal was canon Michal Meduna.

With its approach to physical education and sport, the town of Uherské Hradiště has clearly declared its support for this area, including the modernisation of sports facilities. This was evidenced by the completion of the largest investment in the history of the town, namely the town sports complex, which includes a football arena, which the town began to build in mid-2000 and was inaugurated in October 2003. The investment in the entire complex amounted to 251.5 million EUR. CZK 102 million of which was spent on the construction of the Arena. CZK 102 million were state subsidies, CZK 18 million from the state budget and CZK 50 million from the state budget. CZK 100 million was invested in the heated turf and interior equipment of the 1.FC Synot stands. The stadium, with a capacity of 8,121 seats, is one of the best equipped stadiums in the Czech Republic. The prominent landmark is the four lighting columns, the so-called "owl eyes", with an output of 1,400 lux and the possibility of connecting four intensity levels. The turf is heated by a state-of-the-art German Aquaterm system, while the quality of the 105 x 68 m playing area is maintained by a drainage and irrigation system. The facilities for footballers, officials and media personnel are also of high quality. In 2005, an 80 x 40 m artificial turf training pitch was opened behind the south stand. The first official international match played in the Uherské Hradiště stadium was the U-21 Czechoslovakia-Hungary friendly, played on 20 April 1977 in front of 4,500 spectators. The visitors won 2:0 thanks to Ondrus' gross error in the 5th minute. The 1976 European champion was one of two senior players allowed to play, as he was unable to help the senior team due to a disciplinary penalty after his sending off against Scotland. The next interstate match was played on 26 July 1994, in which the Czech Republic's twenty-one team won 2-1 against the same-aged Danes in August, with Lokvenc, Galásek, Hyský, Černý, among others, playing for our team. The match was watched by over 2 000 spectators. The next match was a full 11 years in the making, when on 7 September 2005 the Czech Republic and Armenia played in the U-21 European Championship qualification at the new stadium. The 6-0 result helped our youngsters to qualify for the play-offs, which were again played in Uherské Hradiště on 11 November 2005. The great atmosphere in the auditorium and the quality of the organizing service were probably the best advertisement, and so the CMFS decided to entrust Uherské Hradiště with the match of the senior national team. As it turned out later, this match with Serbia took on great significance when two days before this match Pavel Nedved announced the end of his national team career. Once again, the sold-out stadium applauded the 2003 Ballon d'Or winner and one of the best footballers in our history as he left the field in the 44th minute. Unfortunately, this match was also unfavourable and the Czech national team lost 1:3 after a poor performance.

In 2014, the stadium underwent further reconstruction and modernisation in order to host the European Under-21 Championship, which Uherské Hradiště hosted in June 2015. The stadium received new turnstiles and modern facilities for players, VIP guests and fans, including a colour screen in the south stand. 

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