Brazilian club abandon World Cup stadium in Salvador

An aerial shot shows the Arena Fonte Nova stadium, in Salvador, in the state of Bahia, northern Brazil March 28, 2014. REUTERS/Valter Pontes

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Esporte Club Bahia, one of the biggest clubs in Salvador, said on Monday they were abandoning the stadium that was rebuilt for last year’s World Cup and returning to use the city’s old municipal ground.

The club said their fans had not been respected at the stadium and their 1-0 win over Campinense on Saturday would be their last match there.

“Bahia is still open to negotiations to play at the Fonte Nova arena if the (owners) consortium values and respects fans...and treats them well,” the club said in a statement announcing their return to the Pituaçu ground. “It’s the fans of Esporte Club Bahia that give life to the stadium.”

The Fonte Nova was rebuilt at a cost of 600 million reais (around $200 million) and hosted six matches in the 2014 World Cup and three in the Confederations Cup a year earlier.

Several of the stadiums built for Brazil’s World Cup have been underused since the tournament ended and at least one has been closed because of structural problems.

Reporting by Andrew Downie; editing by Justin Palmer