Polish officials have
promised England world-class training facilities at Euro 2012
but the area surrounding their camp still leaves a lot to be
The 1966 World Cup winners will train in the city of Krakow
after the English FA agreed to share the costs of upgrading the
facilities at local team Hutnik in exchange for their use during
the June championships co-hosted by Ukraine.
Last year the UK's Sun newspaper published photos of the
changing rooms with bare walls and strewn with rubble, saying
the site was "barely fit for a pub team".
"The changing rooms are now exactly the same as Arsenal's,"
Krakow's deputy mayor Magdalena Sroka told Reuters in an
"We had our people visit Arsenal. What they saw there was
good and they did the same here."
England will play in the Ukrainian cities of Kiev and
Donetsk but are to train in Krakow.
The city has cracked down on media access to the facilities
since the December expose and pleaded for patience while moving
ahead with refurbishment and planting new grass on the training
"We have a video camera installed to monitor the progress of
grass growth and we have British greenkeepers coming here every
week," Sroka said.
She also said representatives of the English FA who visited
the site last week were pleased with what they saw.
Reuters did not have access to the changing rooms but got a
peak of the stadium and nearby facilities from the outside and
they looked far from ready to host the world's top footballers.
Three or four workers were putting fresh paint on rusted
railings surrounding the stadium. There were also letters
missing on a sign for a sports hall opposite the site and wide
holes and cracks on the surface of a nearby car park.
"The pitch and the changing rooms are important and all the
rest is irrelevant," Sroka said.
Krakow is not among the four Polish cities that will stage
Euro 2012 matches but the Dutch and Italians will also have
training camps there.
The Dutch will train at Wisla Krakow, the city's top club in
recent years, while the Italians have selected a smaller ground
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