Synthetic Turf Study in Europe 2012

Synthetic Turf Study in Europe, 2012

Whilst there has been early resistance to employing synthetic pitches in professional football, an increasing number of football clubs have recently switched to synthetic turf in Europe. The reasons for its increasing popularity range from quality improvements and regulatory changes, to proven business cases and football reasons. This report, commissioned by ESTO (The European Synthetic Turf Organisation) to KPMG, aims to assess the costs and benefits of applying synthetic turf in football stadiums across Europe.

Head of Global Sports Advisory, Head of Real Estate, Leisure and Tourism



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Synthetic Turf Study in Europe 2012

An analysis of the costs and benefits of using synthetic turf was prepared based on interviews with industry stakeholders, regulators, as well as stadium/club managers who have switched to synthetic turf. Furthermore, we have critically assessed the available literature on the costs and benefits of utilizing synthetic turf with the aim of understanding the financial and broader impacts associated with its application.

Key highlights from the Synthetic Turf Study include:

  • Synthetic turf is supported by FIFA, UEFA, and many football associations, whilst a range of top-tier clubs use synthetic fields across Europe;
  • Utilization patterns for synthetic fields are more intensive;
  • Synthetic turf requires maintenance, but generally lower costs are incurred than when maintaining natural pitches;
  • Cost savings can be made through the greater utilization schedule of synthetic fields;
  • Apart from financial gains, strategic benefits of using synthetic turf may also be significant;
  • Synthetic turf, if well commercialized, can enhance a sustainable operating model for football clubs, also assisting the goals of the UEFA Financial Fair Play regulations.

An analysis of the costs and benefits of using synthetic turf seems to provide a business case for at least considering, under certain circumstances, a switch from natural grass.

Please download the Synthetic Turf Study from here.

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