Edinburgh boss Richard Cockerill believes their new stadium will allow them to build something special after construction work was completed. The £5.7million Edinburgh Rugby Stadium is adjacent to BT Murrayfield and has a capacity of about 7,800, including room for 2,000 safe-standing fans. All four stands are covered.

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Edinburgh have never had their own stadium since their formation as a professional club in 1996 and have usually used the 67,000-seat Murrayfield while also utilising Meggetland, the home of Boroughmuir. Cockerill’s squad will also be able to train on the artificial surface.

“As a club, as players, staff and fans we now have a home that together we can really build something special around,” said Cockerill, the Edinburgh head coach. “All of us are now in the privileged position to establish what this ground is going to mean to us and the outside world.

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“I want it to be a welcoming place for fans but a cauldron for visiting teams and our supporters will very much be a part of that. It’s down to them to fill this place out with their family and friends and give the players the lift they need when the chips are down.

“One of the many things coronavirus has underscored to us all in sport is the hugely important role fans play in the home team’s performance. This was always a widely held view but now the difference is statistically proven by the change in away results in the absence of crowds in a number of sports.

“Having capacity crowds so close to the pitch and players will allow our supporters to play an even greater part in giving us that all-important home advantage. We have done well to retain some of our best players and managed to bring in some quality too, so there should be lots to shout about from the stands when it is safe again to do so.

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“Getting back into the stadium together will be a big, uniting moment for everyone, for a lot of reasons, and will hopefully help us continue to improve as a club on and off the pitch.”

Scottish Rugby Union chief executive Mark Dodson described the new stadium as a “game-changing project” for both Edinburgh and Scottish rugby. “To finally deliver Edinburgh and its supporters a purpose-built stadium, at the home of Scottish rugby, is a fantastic achievement for all involved in the project after a nomadic existence that has spanned both the amateur and professional era for the side,” he said.

“Not only will the stadium provide the Edinburgh fans with a genuine home and a match-day atmosphere that will reflect their continued enthusiasm and support for the club, but the ground will also act as a hub for all rugby in the city. It will have a lasting legacy for the local community.”

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