Lionel Messi Set to Play on FieldTurf

Argentinian superstar joins a star-studded cast on the FieldTurf pitch at Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, India.

Kolkata, India, September 02, 2011 --( All eyes are focused on Salt Lake Stadium, as Argentina’s national soccer team is set to face Venezuela in a FIFA international match September 2. After months of preparation, the city of Kolkata is ready to embrace Lionel Messi and the world’s finest players at their FIFA 2-Star certified pitch. The event marks the first ever FIFA international match to be played in India – and most certainly provides the country with the prestige and respect it’s been seeking within the FIFA community. Salt Lake Stadium features FieldTurf artificial grass, and FIFA officials have certified the high performance pitch to host such a large international soccer event.

The match has stirred quite the buzz around Kolkata, as India prepares to roll out the red carpet for soccer’s elite. Stadium officials report over 8 corporate boxes being sold already, with their 120,000 seat venue expected to sellout for the game – a clear indication of the exposure Messi generates when making an appearance on the soccer pitch. FieldTurf could not be more proud to be at the forefront of this match, and provide Messi along with the fellow players a surface revered as the best in the industry.

FIFA recommended fields must pass a series of lab and on-site tests in order to qualify for certification. Many variables are tested such as durability, joint strength, ball-to-surface interaction, shock absorbency, and surface deformation, among others. This tough testing procedure ensures the field has been installed to a certain performance standard. FieldTurf fields earning such distinctions on many of its standard products demonstrate the unwavering quality these fields provide to their owners. With 164 certified fields in the world to date, FieldTurf is not only a leader in that respect but clearly the benchmark for artificial soccer playing surfaces in the eyes of FIFA.

What makes FieldTurf stand out is the way the system is built. A mixture of cryogenic rubber and silica sand form the patented infill formula. It is mixed in between the fiber blades to create a cushioned athlete-friendly surface. The result: a strong and durable turf that replicates real grass to near perfection. Ball bounce is similar to a pristine natural grass surface on FieldTurf, and the game is played more fluidly and faster due to improved traction when running on the surface. The system also reduces injuries, in particular head trauma and concussions. Put all this together and you truly get the best sports turf surfacing option available in the market.

A live telecast will be broadcasted in 152 countries, as fans from all over the globe can tune in and watch these star-studded casts duel it out on the field. Stadium officials are grateful for the exposure expected to generate due to the media, and the world will get to witness Salt Lake Stadium in all of its glory. Argentine assistant coach Julian Camino inspected the pitch last week and was pleased with what he saw. “We are not accustomed to play on the artificial turf, but the turf looks good. We have visited the stadium and we are happy with the arrangements here.” There is truly no doubt Salt Lake Stadium is ready for this grand event!

With Kolkata bracing for the arrival of Lionel Messi, FieldTurf will provide Salt Lake stadium officials some peace of mind knowing the surface will be in top shape. Local clubs such as Mohun Bagan A.C., Kingfisher East Bengal F.C., Prayag United S.C. and Mohammedan SC call Salt Lake Stadium home. The venue can now add this FIFA international match to an already impressive resume of events hosted, which also includes the A R Rehman music concert.

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Jason Smollett