Allianz Field Will Replace Grass Surface In Next Three Weeks
Allianz Field's grass surface began to be replaced "starting immediately" after Minnesota United's last home game yesterday, according to Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE. Minnesota United CEO Chris Wright said that "pooling water and blockages in the stadium's extensive underground drainage system" were identified in July and have "damaged grass roots in certain parts of the field." Wright said that a decision was made to "replace the field with grass from a Wisconsin sod farm." He added that consultants have "assured a three-week break" between last night's game and a college football game between St. John's and St. Thomas, as well as a possible Minnesota United playoff game, is "enough time to replace the field and have it playable by October's third weekend." Wright also said that the team is "working through liability issues with stadium contract Mortenson and third-party vendors" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 9/30).
BIGGER ISSUES AT HAND: In St. Paul, Andy Greder notes since Allianz Field opened in April, players would "run and cut, and the grass would come up in divots small and large." During a game in April, Galaxy F Zlatan Ibrahimovic "grabbed a piece of loose turf and spiked it." Minnesota United MF and MLSPA exec board member Ethan Finlay said that the league's artificial turf fields are a "bigger issue that Minnesota's natural surface." He said, "This would be way down the list. I don't think it's something that is endangering the safety of players" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 9/30).