Where England's Euro 2024 fate will be decided: The Elbphilharmonie
The £750m venue where England’s Euro 2024 fate is decided: Robbie Williams performed at Hamburg’s unique Elbphilharmonie (and Prince William and Donald Trump visited!)
- England’s Euro 2024 fate will be decided on Saturday when the draw takes place
- It begins at 5PM and UEFA will host the draw at the Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall
- Manchester United in a mess – they have a collapse in them – It’s All Kicking Off
Euro 2024 fever is in full swing, with the tournament’s automatic qualifying stage over and 21 countries having secured their place in Germany next summer.
Gareth Southgate’s England qualified with ease after going unbeaten, and the final three spots will be decided from the 12 teams who compete in March’s play-offs.
Despite being just over a year since they began their ultimately unsuccessful World Cup campaign, the Three Lions will be able to plot their potential path to glory after Saturday night when the Euro 2024 draw gets underway at 5PM.
England will be in Pot 1 thanks to their impressive form but could face a nightmare group with the likes of Italy lurking in Pot 4 and Croatia and the Netherlands in Pot 3.
It’s all set to take place at the iconic Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, which is a concert hall that sits on the Grasbrook peninsula of the Elbe River.
But what else do we know about the location where England’s Euro 2024 fate will be decided? Mail Sport takes a look….
The Euro 2024 draw will take place at the Elbphilharmonie concert hall (right) in Hamburg
The iconic building sits on the Grasbrook peninsula of the Elbe River and cost €866 (£746m)
It is positioned on top of an old brick warehouse and is designed in the style of a hoisted sail
The Elbphilharmonie, nicknamed Elphi, has a unique but beautiful exterior given it is positioned on top of an old brick warehouse that was built in 1963.
It was designed by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron and developed in the style of a hoisted sail, with 1,000 glass windows.
The project for the building – which has a glass construction – was originally launched by architect and real estate developer Alexander Gerard before the City of Hamburg took it on.
Construction began in April 2007 and was finally completed in January 2017.
However, the concert hall – which is Hamburg’s tallest inhabited building – has a chequered relationship with the city given it is a major tourist and cultural attraction, but also cost significantly more than planned.
In 2007, it was optimistically claimed construction would be finished by 2010 at a cost of €77m (£66.4m).
Along with a seven-year delay, costs continually rose before €866 (£746m) was eventually shelled out.
There was a similarly fractured relationship between the city, contractors and architects which meant the project was suspended for two years at one point while a new arrangement was worked out.
Meanwhile, the construction also faced a legal challenge after the city decided to waive the usual requirement to hold a competition to choose the architects – in this case Herzog & Meuron.
The European courts ultimately ruled in their favour but this only added to the controversy and drama surrounding the Elphi.
The building was designed by Swiss firm Herzog & de Meuron and has 1,000 glass windows
It comprises three auditoriums with 2,820 seats in total, including The Great Concert Hall
The building – which has 26 floors – is 108 metres high and was designed as a cultural and residential complex.
While it is known for its concert halls, the Elphi also encompasses restaurants, bars, a spa, a hotel, several luxury apartments and a parking garage.
It measures at 1.3million square feet and comprises three auditoriums with 2,820 seats in total.
The Great Concert Hall fits in 2,100 of these, with the Recital Hall having a capacity of 550 people and the Kaistudio allowing 170 visitors.
However, despite several famous composers and opera singers such as Robbie Williams and Jonas Kaufmann performing there, the venue’s acoustics have been criticised.
One performance from Kaufmann in 2019 of Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde (the song of the Earth) led to audience members shouting ‘can’t hear you’.
The German singer simply replied: ‘This hall does not help.’
Nevertheless, TIME magazine still named the Elphi as one of the World’s 100 Greatest Places in 2018.
Several other international stars and dignitaries such as Prince William and Kate Middleton have visited the venue.
Meanwhile, former US president Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump attended a concert shortly after the Elphi opened alongside French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife.
Robbie Williams is one of many famous musical acts to have performed at the Elbphilharmonie
Several renowned international figures have attended events there, including former US President Donald Trump (centre) and French President Emmanuel Macron (second left)
Prince William and Kate Middleton (purple dress) visited the venue shortly after its opening
Ultimately, as Gareth Southgate perches in the concert hall – which takes its name from the Elbe river – he’ll perch comfortably in the knowledge that England are the team everyone wants to avoid at Euro 2024.
But, the tournament will be won or lost on the grass; by the players – of whom England have some of the very best world football has to offer.
‘It doesn’t matter, really (who England pull in the draw),’ said Southgate.
‘There look like being really strong teams in pot two and pot three looks like it could be very strong.
‘We’ve just got to be ready for whatever comes our way.’
England are as ready as they’ve ever been.
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