The National Olympic Stadium in Cambodia’s Phnom Penh is set to undergo a major renovation which will help the venue meet the standards set by FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).
The Phnom Penh Olympic Stadium has a capacity of 50,000 and currently hosts Cambodia national team’s international football matches, including their 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, as well as domestic and continental matches at club level.
However, with Cambodia set to host the 2023 Southeast Asian Games, the authorities are looking to redevelop the arena to meet FIFA and AFC requirements.
One of the major challenges the stadium face is the lack of seating on most of the stands.
The teams are making their way out onto the pitch in the majestic Phnom Penh Olympic Stadium.
— FOX Sports LIVE! (@FSAsiaLive) December 13, 2017
“Cambodia must meet regulations to ensure safety and promote the image of Cambodia abroad,” Football Federation of Cambodia (FFC) secretary-general Keo Sareth was quoted as saying by the official website of ASEAN Football Federation (AFF).
He also believes that the football governing bodies could deny Cambodia the right to host their international matches at the venue in the future if redevelopment does not take place.
“If there is no renovation from 2020, FIFA and AFC will not allow Cambodia to sell tickets or take part in official tournaments organised by them. Without proper seating for fans, FIFA and the AFC do not allow tickets to be sold for spectators,” Sareth said.
FFC are reportedly preparing a proposal that they will submit to the country’s Ministry of Economy and Finance to renovate the seating and lighting at the venue.
— FOX Sports LIVE! (@FSAsiaLive) November 20, 2018
The Olympic Stadium was opened in 1964 and was designed by architect Vann Molyvann. Since 2015, the venue has been equipped with an artificial turf.
(Photo courtesy: Khmer Scholar)