Siôn Simon Labour candidate for West Midlands Mayor has today called for FA Cup semi finals and England men’s international friendly matches to return to Villa Park in the heart of the country.
As Mayor, Labour’s Siôn Simon will work with the Football Association and Department of Culture, Media & Sport to bring more elite sport out of London and into the West Midlands.
Lifelong West Bromwich Albion fan and season-ticket holder Siôn Simon said,
“Fans should not have to travel to London to watch the England national team play. Friendly matches should come out of the capital and return to Villa Park.
“The England football team belongs to the whole country and not just London.
“I will work with the FA and Department for Culture, Media and Sport to bring international football back to the West Midlands.
“FA Cup semi finals should return to the heart of the country too.
”Villa Park has played host to memorable FA Cup matches over the years and should play host to them again.”
Siôn Simon has today written to the Football Association, calling on them to work with him if elected as West Midlands Mayor to bring international friendlies and FA Cup semi finals back to Villa Park.
Between 1901 and 2007 Villa Park hosted 55 FA Cup semi finals, more than any other stadium, including the new and old Wembley Stadiums combined.
Villa Park last hosted an international match in 2005 and is the only English ground to host international matches in three different centuries.
Siôn Simon also strongly backs Coventry’s bid to be the UK City of Culture in 2021 and Birmingham’s bid to host the Commonwealth Games in 2026.
England women’s football team plays internationals around the country and this year’s semi finals were played in Solihull and Manchester.