MILAN - This morning, the International Olympic Committee's Evaluation Commission paid a visit to the Meazza as part of its inspections of the locations included in the Milan-Cortina bid to host the 2026 Winter Olympic Games. Octavian Morariu, member of the IOC and president of the Evaluation Committee, led the delegation, which was welcomed by Giovanni Malagò, the president of CONI, and Carlo Mornati, the secretary general. In the presence of Roberta Guaineri, Councillor for Sport and Tourism for the City of Milan, and Antonio Rossi, Undersecretary for Major Sports Events for the Lombardy Region, the Corporate CEO of FC Internazionale Milano Alessandro Antonello and AC Milan's President Paolo Scaroni had the honour of receiving the guests. During the visit, the IOC delegation had the opportunity to meet two legends of the respective clubs: Francesco Toldo and Franco Baresi.
Alessandro Antonello had this to say: "It is a pleasure for me to welcome you all to the San Siro, also named 'Giuseppe Meazza' after a famous Inter centre forward, an iconic stadium for both the City of Milan and the Country of Italy.
"Here many memorable pages of sporting history have been written and several sporting champions and teams have had the chance to enchant passionate crowds over the decades from the 1920s right up to the present day.
"The San Siro is known all over the world for being a world class football stadium, maximum 5 stars according to UEFA's criteria, and able to successfully host the UEFA Champions League final in 2016 after a state-of-the-art renovation. As Inter, founded in 1908, we have been fortunate to call this our home, together with our cousins AC Milan, since 1947 when we moved from the Arena Civic. But the history of this stadium is not only made up of football moments.
"On more than one occasion rugby matches have been played on this ground, and in 2009 the All Blacks attracted more than 80,000 spectators. Famous boxing bouts have also been fought right here in this stadium for several unique titles.
"San Siro and the area surrounding it is synonymous not only with the stadium, but with sports in a wider context. The racetrack complex, the nearby Lido complex and the projects for the future of the stadium and the area itself clearly show how the DNA of this place is made of sport.
"And the stadium itself is not only related to sport: this is the place where some of the most famous bands and musicians of all time have played. Names such as Carlos Santana, Bob Dylan and The Rolling Stones are just a few of these few stars.
"It would be an honour for this stadium and this city to host the Opening Ceremony of the 2026 Olympic Games, a unique moment where the whole world would gather here in a night of brotherhood, peace and pure Olympic spirit."