AZ's stadium roof partially collapses during high winds Published on 8/11/2019

Part of the roof of the AFAS Stadium in Alkmaar, belonging to AZ of the Eredivisie, collapsed on Saturday with no reported injuries.

Images show part of one of the AFAS Stadium's stands caved in, with roof panels having fallen onto the seats below. AZ confirmed there were no reported injuries and a club statement emphasised that the stadium was empty at the time of the incident.

"There was nobody in the stadium at the time of the collapse. The management and stakeholders of the club are now on their way. We are still looking into the cause," the statement said.

General manager Robert Eenhoorn later addressed the issue, and although he could offer no answers as to what caused the collapse, he did confirm that no games would take place in the damaged stadium until it was 100 per cent safe. "This surprised all of us," he told at a news conference.

"We're very shocked but particularly happy there was no one hurt. In the coming days, we'll conduct a review with experts. Only when that investigation has been done can we elaborate on this matter. It is much too early for that now. "No matches will be played in the stadium if the situation is not safe. As soon as more is clear about our upcoming matches, we'll report it as soon as possible."

AZ were due to play Mariupol in a Europa League qualifying match next Thursday and an Eredivisie game against Groningen three days later at the stadium. The Dutch club tweeted that they would consult with the relevant authorities before announcing the locations of any rescheduled games.

"AZ will discuss the locations of the upcoming home matches as soon as possible in consultation with the KNVB and UEFA." the tweet read.

The ground was built in 2006 and has a capacity of 17,000. Despite its relatively recent construction this is the second worrying incident at the AFAS Stadium. During a 2013 Europa League match against the Greek club Atromitos, the arena was evacuated after a fire broke out in the stands. That game was abandoned in the 57th minute and concluded the following day.

This is the second occurence of a partial stadium collapse in the last week as the roof above the disabled section of the Kilmarnock ground fell in after their Scottish Premier League game with Rangers last Saturday. Nobody was seriously hurt in that incident.

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