March 10, 2007 / 2:21 PM / 10 years ago

Soccer-FA handed keys to new Wembley Stadium

LONDON, March 10 (Reuters) - England's Football Association has taken possession of the new Wembley Stadium, a major step towards its official inauguration and the hosting on May 19 of the FA Cup final.

The FA said on its official Web site (www.thefa.com) that the construction firm Multiplex had handed over the keys to the 750 million pound ($1.45 billion), 90,000-seat stadium on Friday.

"(It is) a significant step towards staging this year's FA Cup final and opening the new Wembley Stadium," FA chief executive Brian Barwick said in a statement on the Web site.

This can be confirmed only after test events, mainly to test security installations, including the first football match in the new stadium an under-21 friendly international between England and Italy on March 24.

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