Confirmed for the next August 27, 2023, is the debut of Galo in its new home, the MRV Arena.
Join us as we delve into the history of this new stadium in Brazilian football, along with the journey of Atlético Mineiro as the home team, prior to the creation of their modern arena.
Atlético Mineiro as the Home Team
Galo Mineiro can consider itself a lucky club. Always propelled by its fans, the popular “Massa” (Mass), they have always been crucial for this club of the people to achieve so many glories.
Their main stage until now has been the giant of Belo Horizonte. Shared between the two greats of Minas Gerais, Galo and Cruzeiro, the Mineirão is a heritage of the state capital.
There, unforgettable matches were played. Countless finals of Mineiro Championships, Brazilian Championships, and even the Libertadores. Moreover, it was one of the venues for the 2014 World Cup, but it carries the historical trauma of the fateful day of July 8, 2014, when Brazil was eliminated by Germany, losing 7-1.
However, the Mineirão still holds its mystique. Located in a beautiful area of Belo Horizonte, on the shores of Pampulha Lagoon, the Mineirão reached its peak attendance in 1997, with 132,000 spectators for the Mineiro Championship final between Cruzeiro and Villa Nova.
Image: Domínio Público
Despite this, Galo Mineiro was not left without a home when Mineirão had to undergo renovations to meet World Cup standards. They adopted the Horto, the stadium of América Mineiro, as their home.
There, Galo made its journey to becoming the champion of the Libertadores for the first time, with Ronaldinho, Jô, and company in 2013. The final was played in the brand-new Mineirão. An emotionally charged victory in a penalty shootout against Olímpia.
Image: Pedro Souza/Atlético-MG
Although they always performed well in the mentioned stadiums, there was something missing. The exclusive home of the Massa Atleticana was lacking. With great effort, that day has finally come. And it will be next Sunday.
The MRV Arena
MRV is a private real estate developer based in Belo Horizonte.
For some time now, the company has acted as a kind of patron of Galo. It was through this partnership, apparently, that Atlético managed to build an extremely competitive team starting in 2020.
The heaviest signing, still proving to be one of the best players in Brazilian football for at least three seasons, Hulk, was one of the first to come from the partnership between Galo and MRV.
In addition to him, goalkeeper Everson, Guilherme Arana, and Vargas are the backbone of this team, which in 2021 won the Triple Crown, taking the Mineiro Championship, the Copa do Brasil, and the Brazilian Championship.
Beyond the investment in the sporting field, MRV, being a successful company primarily in real estate, saw the opportunity to join forces with Galo to create a major multi-purpose arena.
The Mineirão, often the host for Atlético and Cruzeiro matches, frequently found itself with a heavily used pitch, and thus a quality standard not in line with the grandeur of the teams and competitions held there.
Furthermore, the Mineirão is a stadium owned by the State Government of Minas Gerais, managed by Minas Arena.
As expected, it requires high maintenance and faces scheduling conflicts between Galo and Cruzeiro.
For these reasons, and the intention to profit from the significant presence of the Massa Atleticana, MRV took the lead in the project to give Galo its exclusive home.
It’s worth noting that the ownership of the MRV Arena is 100% owned by Clube Atlético Mineiro, while the engineering company will hold the stadium’s naming rights.
The MRV Arena is located in the California neighborhood, on the border between the cities of Belo Horizonte and Contagem, in the metropolitan region.
Construction began in April 2020 and has recently been completed. Now, it’s ready to host games. The first match, a big one. Galo seeks recovery after a loss to Vasco, while Santos looks for a positive streak after an emotional last-minute victory against Grêmio.
Most importantly, the MRV Arena will have a capacity for 46,000 spectators. In addition to football matches, it already has scheduled concerts by Ivete Sangalo, Maroon 5, and even Paul McCartney.
This high frequency of concerts and matches could damage the pitch. For this reason, Galo and the administration of the MRV Arena are already considering the trend of new stadiums and contemplating the installation of a synthetic pitch.
What do you think of this decision? Comment!
Image: Twitter Atlético Mineiro
Written by Vitor F L Miller