|Former names||JJB Stadium (1999–2009)|
|Location||Loire Drive, Robin Park, Wigan WN5 0UH|
|Owner||Wigan Football Company|
|Operator||Wigan Football Company|
|Record attendance||25,133 vs. Manchester United in 2008|
|Field size||105 by 68 metres (115 yd × 74 yd)|
|Opened||6 August 1999|
The DW Stadium is a stadium in Robin Park, near Wigan, within the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, Greater Manchester, England. The ground is owned and managed by Wigan Football Company Limited, which is 85% owned by Wigan Athletic and 15% owned by Wigan local authority. It is used by Wigan Athletic football club and Wigan Warriors rugby league club, the rugby league club having a 50 years lease on tenancy to play games at the stadium. Built and opened in 1999,it is named after its main sponsor, DW Sports Fitness. In UEFA matches, it is called Wigan Athletic Stadium due to UEFA regulations on sponsorship.
The stadium architect was Alfred McAlpine.Wigan Athletic and Wigan Warriors moved into it from their long-term homes of Springfield Park and Central Park respectively. International rugby league matches have also taken place at the venue.
Its current capacity is 25,138—seated in four single-tier stands—and its record attendance was on 11 May 2008 when 25,133 people watched Wigan Athletic play Manchester United in the final match of the 2007–08 Premier League season.
The stadium was designed by Alfred McAlpine and completed in August 1999.
Wigan Athletic had spent the previous 67 years playing at Springfield Park, and their first match at the stadium was a friendly against Morecambe, just before the stadium's official opening.
The stadium's inauguration was marked with a friendly between Wigan Athletic and neighbours Manchester United – who were then reigning European champions, Premier League champions and FA Cup holders – with United's manager Sir Alex Ferguson officially opening the stadium.
The first competitive football match there took place on 7 August 1999, with Wigan Athletic facing Scunthorpe United in a Second Division match. Simon Haworth scored twice, including the first competitive goal at the new stadium, as Athletic triumphed 3–0.
Wigan Warriors moved to the stadium a month after it opened, once they had played their final home game of the 1999 regular season at Central Park, which had been the club's home since 1902. After their former ground was sold, the possibility of ground sharing with Bolton Wanderers F.C. at the Reebok Stadium (now University of Bolton Stadium) was presented, but the new stadium in Wigan was chosen instead.Their first game there was a play-off match against Castleford Tigers, which they lost, on 19 September. The Warriors did not lose a competitive match at the stadium in 2001 and 2020.
The first away team to win a competitive football match at the stadium was Wigan Athletic. A first round FA Cup tie against non-league Cambridge City was played there due to City's ground being deemed unsuitable to host the tie. Wigan played in their changed strip and used the away dressing room since it was technically a 'home' game for Cambridge City. A Stuart Barlow brace secured the win for Wigan.
Whilst Wigan Warriors and Wigan Athletic flourished in the new stadium (Wigan Athletic in particular would achieve significant success, rising up the English football pyramid to the Premier League by 2005), Orrell R.U.F.C. did not. Dave Whelan and Maurice Lindsay decided to invest heavily in the club, with the aim of having the club play in rugby union's Guinness Premiership at the stadium. After failing to win 2004's National Division Two, Whelan pulled a large amount of investment from the club, to a more modest GB£30,000 a year. This was the beginning of Orrell's demise, as players left during the summer of that year and the club were consequently relegated the season after. Ownership eventually passed from Lindsay back to the club's members, but by this point, Orrell had sold their former Edge Hall Road ground to Dave Whelan's company, Whelco Holdings, and therefore had no assets apart from their rebuilt clubhouse following a fire in 2002. Orrell never settled at the JJB Stadium, and were eventually de-professionalised at the end of the 2006–07 season.
On 7 March 2005, Greater Manchester police announced that they would stop policing Wigan Athletic matches at the stadium from 2 April. This move would almost certainly have resulted in the stadium's safety certificate being revoked, effectively forcing the team to play behind closed doors. The move was part of an ongoing dispute between the police force and Dave Whelan surrounding GB£300,000 in unpaid policing costs. The police's decision would not have affected Wigan Warriors, whose games are stewarded instead of policed. The situation was temporarily resolved on 8 March with both sides reaching an agreement that would allow Athletic to play at the ground until the end of the season. Four months later, Wigan Athletic, facing the prospect of playing their home games in the Premier League in an empty stadium, grudgingly paid the money they owed to the police. The club successfully appealed against the payments in court and won damages from the police.
On 7 September 2008, Wigan Warriors revealed plans to take their Super League Play-Off against Bradford Bulls to a neutral venue.The controversial relocation was forced due to a fixture clash, with a match between football clubs Wigan Athletic and Sunderland to take place less than 24 hours after the Super League match. Whelan, who controlled Wigan Athletic, refused permission for the Warriors to stage their elimination at the stadium, citing concerns over the playing surface. The game was relocated to Widnes Vikings home ground, the Stobart Stadium. In the same season, JJB Sports announced they would not continue to sponsor Wigan Warriors, leaving them without a main shirt sponsor.
The stadium's average attendance has increased significantly since its opening in 1999. The Wigan Warriors' average attendance has increased by 32.5% from its first full season at the stadium in 2000, and Wigan Athletic's average attendance has increased by 181.2% from the 2000–01 season. The highest recorded attendance for a rugby league match is shared between three fixtures; the Wigan Warriors' fixture against St Helens R.F.C. on 25 March 2005; Game 4 of the 2005 Tri-Nations series between Great Britain and Australia on 6 November; and Game 5 of the 2004 Tri-Nations series between Great Britain and Australia on 13 November at 25,004 each.The highest recorded football attendance at the stadium was Wigan Athletic's home fixture against Manchester United on 11 May 2008—the final day of the 2007–08 Premier League season—with 25,133 fans attending. This is the stadium's highest recorded overall attendance to date, and was the match where Manchester United were crowned Premier League champions for that season.
In March 2009, Dave Whelan acquired a chain of fitness clubs from JJB Sports. In the process, Whelan used the business to set up a new venture, DWSportsfitness and announced that the stadium name would change to the DW Stadium in August.Whelan also announced that at the same time the stadium was renamed, its ownership would pass from himself to Wigan Athletic. Concerns about the future of Wigan Warriors were arrested in the same announcement, as Whelan extended the lease on the stadium by 50 years for the rugby league team. Before their match against Leeds Rhinos in July 2009, both clubs were given the opportunity to rename one stand, with the intention of renaming them in honour to a recognised player from each club's history. The rugby league club were granted the East Stand, which they renamed 'The Boston Stand' in tribute to the Welsh wing Billy Boston, As Wigan Athletic had spent many years in the lower leagues it was recognised that most of their players were not known, so the West Stand was renamed 'The Springfield Stand' after the club's former ground.
In August 2020 it announced that DW Sports was to enter administration.Later that month it was announced that Frasers Group would buy "certain" assets from DW Sports Fitness for £37m, but would not be using the firm's brand name. If DW Sports ceases to exist, it is unknown who will purchase the naming rights to the stadium.
The stadium design is based on cantilevered, prefabricated steel roof and terrace structuring.It is an all-seater arena with a seating capacity of 25,138. The stands are rectangular and both the northern and southern stands have supporting steel girders suspended from beneath the roof. The four stands are of approximately the same height, however the stadium is not totally enclosed, leaving four exposed corners.
The seats are a mixture of both resident teams' main colours of red and blue. The stadium is fully compliant with safety guidelines for a sports ground.
The stadium also has facilities and access for up to 1 fans with disabilities, with facilities for partially sighted fans.
The pitch is large enough to conform with both FIFA and the standard rugby league requirements, at 6,110 by 5,460 metres (6,680 yd × 5,970 yd). This leaves an in-goal area just 5 metres (5.5 yd) deep for rugby matches. It is mostly made of natural grass, with 2% of the pitch composed of synthetics to provide stability. The ground has irrigation, and an under-heating system to resist icy weather.
The Boston Stand, named after Wigan Warriors legend Billy Boston, runs parallel to the western 'Springfield Stand' along the side of the pitch. The Boston Stand is the largest stand in the stadium, holding an electronic scoreboard and has WIGAN spelt out in the seats and has been occupied by the home fans since 2005.
The Springfield Stand, named after Wigan Athletic's former ground Springfield Park contains the stadium's vital facilities; four dressing rooms, benches, a doping control room and a treatment room for the players, as well as four executive boxes, ten radio commentary points and a designated TV studio.
The South Stand is used to seat the home fans behind the goal, opposite to the away fans in the North Stand.
At both Wigan Athletic and Wigan Warriors matches, away supporters are situated in the North Stand behind the goal. Occasionally, during rugby games which attract low away support, the 5,400 capacity North Stand is closed altogether, and the away fans who attend are put into an alternative stand.
Wigan Athletic's success has improved considerably since their move to the stadium from Springfield Park in 1999. The club subsequently climbed up two divisions to play in the Premier League from 2005 until 2013.
|2000–01 [L2]||6,861||10,048 (vs. Bristol City)|
|2001–02 [L2]||5,771||7,783 (vs. Tranmere Rovers)|
|2002–03 [L1]||7,288||12,783 (vs. Oldham Athletic)|
|2003–04 [C]||9,526||20,669 (vs. West Ham United)|
|2004–05 [C]||11,155||20,745 (vs. Sunderland)|
|2005–06 [PL]||20,610||25,023 (vs. Liverpool)|
|2006–07 [PL]||18,159||24,726 (vs. West Ham United)|
|2007–08 [PL]||19,046||25,133 (vs. Manchester United)|
|2008–09 [PL]||18,413||22,954 (vs. Arsenal)|
|2009–10 [PL]||18,006||22,113 (vs. Arsenal)|
|2010–11 [PL]||16,812||22,043 (vs. West Ham United)|
|2011–12 [PL]||18,633||22,187 (vs. Newcastle United)|
|2012–13 [PL]||19,359||24,001 (vs. Aston Villa)|
|2013–14 [C]||15,177||19,226 (vs. Bolton Wanderers)|
|2014–15 [C]||12,882||16,347 (vs. Middlesbrough)|
|2015–16 [L1]||9,467||18,730 (vs. Barnsley)|
|2016–17 [C]||11,722||15,280 (vs. Leeds United)|
|2017–18 [L1]||9,152||19,242 (vs. Manchester City)|
|2018–19 [C]||11,661||15,665 (vs. Norwich City)|
|2019–20 [C]||10,592||14,819 (vs. Leeds United)|
|PL = Premier League, C = Football League Championship |
Rising success on the pitch has been met with increased attendances. Promotion into the Premier League meant that in their first season of English top-flight football, Wigan Athletic's average home attendance almost doubled from the season before. Over three times more fans attended matches at the stadium during Wigan's 2007–08 season in the Premier League than had attended in the 2001–02 season when Wigan Athletic were in the Football League Second Division. Wigan Athletic's average home attendance for 2007–08 was the lowest out of all 20 teams in the Premier League, failing to make the top 30 English clubs in terms of attendance.The same season saw the highest ever attendance at the stadium, when 25,133 people witnessed Wigan play Manchester United on the final day of the season.
Wigan Athletic's average attendance was again the lowest in the league for the Premier League 2008–09 season.Premier League attendances fell on average by around 426 per club during the 2008–09 season. Wigan Athletic's home attendance fell by more than this, with their average attendance for the 2008–09 season falling by 633 from the season before. The highest attendance at the stadium for this season was a match between Wigan Athletic and Arsenal F.C., in which 22,954 people were counted. This attendance was 2,357 fans lower than the highest attendance in the season before.
Wigan Warriors moved from Central Park to the stadium in 1999 after the end of Super League IV's regular season. Since moving to the new stadium, Wigan Warriors' success in rugby league has not been as high as it was at their old Central Park ground, however the good times do seem to be back for the club after they won the Super League Grand Final and League Leaders shield in 2010 under the guidance of coach Michael Maguire and chairman Ian Lenagan.
|1999 [SL] [A]||13,374||13,374 (vs. Castleford Tigers)|
|2000 [SL]||11,329||19,186 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2001 [SL]||11,803||21,073 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2002 [SL]||10,480||18,789 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2003 [SL]||11,217||21,790 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2004 [SL]||13,333||20,052 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2005 [SL]||13,894||25,004 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2006 [SL]||14,464||18,358 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2007 [SL]||16,040||24,028 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2008 [SL]||13,955||19,958 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2009 [SL]||14,080||22,232 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2010 [SL]||15,181||22,701 (vs. Warrington Wolves)|
|2011 [SL]||17,193||24,057 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2012 [SL]||16,042||21,522 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2013 [SL]||14,544||23,861 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2014 [SL]||14,101||20,224 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|2015 [SL]||13,980||24,054 (vs. St Helens R.F.C.)|
|SL = Super League|
Attendances have generally risen for the Wigan Warriors since the start of the 2002 season, averaging around 14,000 over the three seasons from 2006 to 2009. Aside from Grand Finals, the largest Super League attendance was recorded at the stadium in 2005 when Wigan Warriors played their local rivals, St Helens R.F.C..
This match is also the highest home attendance in the Wigan Warriors' history at the stadium. The twenty thousand mark has been broken ten times since moving to the new stadium in 1999—eight times against St Helens RLFC, once against local rivals Warrington Wolves in the opening round of the 2008 Super League XIII season, and once in July 2009 against the Leeds Rhinos following a campaign advertising the game as the 'Big One'.In 2010, the Warriors were officially the biggest supported team in the Super League.
As well as the fixtures for the two domestic teams, the stadium is a venue for international rugby league. Since the stadium's construction in 1999, it has been an ever-present venue whenever International series have been played in England.
Its first involvement came during the 2004 series, where the home Great Britain and Ireland national team defeated the Australians 24–12, with Terry Newton and Andy Farrell both scoring in their home town of Wigan.The venue was again selected for the 2005 series, and again the match was between Great Britain and Australia—this time the home team lost 6–20—with Greater Manchester born Adrian Morley scoring Great Britain's solitary try. Both matches were complete sell-outs, each having attendances above 25,000. The match in 2004 was the third highest attendance of the series, coming behind a match at the City of Manchester Stadium between Great Britain and Australia, and the series final between the same two teams at Elland Road.
In addition to the Tri-Nations, the stadium has also played host to visiting nations during their European tours. Australia played Great Britain in front of a sell-out crowd during the 2001 Kangaroo tour, with the home side losing 8–28.Australia narrowly defeated Great Britain again in 2003 at the stadium, winning by a margin of four points during their 2003 European Tour. New Zealand have also played at the stadium during their tours. In 2002, a try scored in his home town by Martin Gleeson helped Great Britain to defeat the 'Kiwis' 16–10. The visitors lost again during their 2007 tour, this time 28–22 in a closely fought game in which Wigan-born second-row Sean O'Loughlin featured.
The stadium has hosted the World Club Challenge four times, in 2000, between St. Helens and the Melbourne Storm in 2011 when Wigan took on St. George Illawarra Dragons.and in 2015 and 2016 when Wigan Warriors hosted the Brisbane Brochos.
Since its opening in 1999, it hosted six Great Britain internationals.
|24 November 2001||Australia||8 - 28||25,011||2001 Ashes series|
|23 November 2002||New Zealand||16 - 10||22,247||2002 NZ tour of Britain|
|8 November 2003||Australia||18 - 22||24,614||2003 Ashes series|
|13 November 2004||24 - 12||25,004||2004 Tri-Nations|
|6 November 2005||6 - 20||25,004||2005 Tri-Nations|
|10 November 2007||New Zealand||28 - 22||21,235||2007 All Golds Tour|
Since the Great Britain national rugby league team has split into individual home nations, it has hosted three England internationals.
|9 November 2009||Australia||16 - 26||23,122||2009 Four Nations|
|1 November 2013||France||34 - 6||22,276||2013 World Cup quarter-final|
|14 November 2015||New Zealand||20 - 14||24,741||2015 NZ tour of Britain|
The stadium's surroundings are mostly urban, as it is located in the north of Wigan's Robin Park retail complex in the western suburb of Newtown, on the south bank of the River Douglas, west of the Miry Lane industrial estate. The stadium's car parks are situated around the canal, and can hold up to 2,500 cars.
Next to the stadium's South Stand lies the Robin Park Arena,which is operated by Wigan Sports Development Unit and is capable of seating 1,000 spectators. The arena is mainly used for athletics, as well as functions for: North West Counties Football League side Wigan Robin Park, and Wigan Athletic Reserves. The arena was formerly used by the Wigan Warriors' junior academy, before they moved to Edge Hall Road to join the reserve side. Robin Park Sports Centre is situated directly opposite the Stadium and Arena.
The main road serving the complex is the A49, running west-bound 750 metres (820 yd) south of the stadium. Both of Wigan's railway stations, Wigan Wallgate and Wigan North Western lie 1.3–1.6 kilometres (0.8–1.0 mi) east of the stadium.
A Wigan Warriors played one match in 1999 at the new stadium after moving from their former Central Park ground—an elimination play-off match against the Castleford Tigers.
Wigan Athletic Football Club is an English professional association football club based in Wigan, Greater Manchester, England. The team competes in League One, the third tier of the English football league system. Founded in 1932, they have played at the 25,138 seat DW Stadium since 1999, before which they played at Springfield Park. Their colours are blue and white stripes, although all-blue shirts have been common throughout the club's history. The club regards Bolton Wanderers as its primary derby rival.
Wigan Warriors is a professional rugby league club founded and based in Wigan, Greater Manchester, England. The club competes in the Betfred Super League.
David Whelan is an English former footballer. During his football career, he played for Blackburn Rovers and Crewe Alexandra. Whelan is the former owner of Football League Championship club Wigan Athletic, having also been the chairman of the club for twenty years, before passing the position over to his grandson, David Sharpe, who eventually passed the ownership over to International Entertainment Corporation.
JJB Sports plc was a British sports retailer. On 24 September 2012, shares in JJB Sports were suspended, and the firm called in administrators. On 1 October 2012, it was announced that Sports Direct had purchased part of the business, including 20 stores, the brand, and its website for £28.3 million. The brand is currently owned by Sports Direct's parent, Frasers Group.
The DCBL Stadium is a rugby league stadium in Widnes, Cheshire, England. It is the home of Rugby League side Widnes Vikings of the Betfred Championship, and American football side Halton Spartans of the BAFA National Leagues. The stadium is all seater and has a total capacity of 13,350.
Springfield Park was a multi-purpose stadium in Wigan, Greater Manchester. It was the home ground of Wigan Athletic F.C. until the club moved to the new JJB Stadium after the 1998–99 season. At its largest, the stadium held 40,000. In its 102-year existence the ground only saw 32 years as a Football League venue, 11 years for Wigan Borough F.C. and 21 years for Wigan Athletic FC, before it was demolished to make way for a housing estate in 1999.
Central Park was a rugby league stadium in Wigan, England, which was the home of Wigan RLFC before the club moved to the JJB Stadium in 1999. Its final capacity was 18,000. The site is now a Tesco supermarket car park.
Maurice Lindsay is the former chairman of Preston North End F.C. and of Wigan Warriors R.L.F.C. and had two stints at the club after being one of the 'Gang of Four' directors that used to run the club when it domininated the league in the 1980s.
The Edge Hall Road Community Stadium is a rugby union community stadium, located in Orrell, Greater Manchester. Originally built as the permanent ground of the local Orrell rugby union team, but the club departed the stadium in 2007, with the development team of Wigan Warriors beginning to use the ground that same year.
Leigh Sports Village is an £83 million multi-use sports, retail and housing development in Leigh, Greater Manchester, England. The centrepiece of the development is a 12,000-capacity stadium which is home to professional rugby league team Leigh Centurions, Manchester United's under-19 and under-23 teams and Manchester United W.F.C. The complex also plays host to amateur rugby league club Leigh East and amateur athletics club Leigh Harriers, who both occupy dedicated facilities on the site. Other facilities on site include the Leigh campus of Wigan and Leigh College, Leigh Sports Centre, which includes a gym, multi-use sports hall and swimming pool, a Holiday Inn Express hotel, a Morrisons supermarket and the Whistling Wren pub.
The 2005–06 Football League Cup was the 46th staging of the Football League Cup, a knock-out competition for the top 92 football clubs played in English football league system. The competition name reflects a sponsorship deal with lager brand Carling.
The 2008 Wigan Warriors season saw the club compete in Super League XIII as well as the 2008 Challenge Cup tournament.
The History of the Wigan Warriors stretches back to the club's foundation in 1872. It was one of the founding members of the Northern Rugby Football Union after the schism from the one code of rugby football in 1895. At the elite competition level, Wigan is the most successful club in the history of British Rugby League, measured by total of trophies won. The club has won 22 Rugby Football League Championships, 19 Challenge Cups and 4 World Club Challenge trophies.
Wigan Athletic's season in the 2008–09 Premier League was their fourth season in the Premier League, and Steve Bruce’s first full season as the manager of the club. The off-season saw the club sign a number of players, including Middlesbrough's highly rated young midfielder Lee Cattermole, Birmingham City pair Daniël de Ridder and Olivier Kapo, both of whom played under Bruce at Birmingham, and little known Egyptian striker Amr Zaki, ranked as the world's best striker in FIFA rankings.
This article is about the 2009 season of the Wigan Warriors in the Super League XIV and Challenge Cup.
2009 Super League season results details the regular season and play-off match results of Super League XIV.
The 2000 World Club Challenge was contested by 1999 NRL season premiers, the Melbourne Storm and 1999's Super League IV champions, St. Helens. The match was played on 22 January at JJB Stadium, Wigan before a crowd of 13,394. The Melbourne Storm defeated St Helens 44 - 6. This was the first World Club Challenge since 1997 and the Super League war.
The 2010 Wigan Warriors season is the club's fifteenth season in the Super League, since its launch in 1996. Wigan Warriors entered the season following their sixth-placed league finish and subsequent play-off knock-out in the 2009 Super League season, as well as their semi-final knock-out in the 2009 Challenge Cup. The 2010 season is the eleventh year in which rugby league has been played at the town's DW Stadium.
The 2005–06 Wigan Athletic season was the club's 28th season in the Football League and their inaugural season in the Premier League, following their promotion from the Championship the season before.
The history of Wigan Athletic Football Club starts in 1932, when the club were founded. They were elected to The Football League in 1978, and reached the Premier League for the first time in 2005. Their first major honour was victory in the 2013 FA Cup Final.
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