On Friday 25 November in Natal, the demolition of the city’s Machadao stadium and Machadinho sports hall was completed, thus bringing to an end the first phase of construction work on the new Arena das Dunas. The venue is set to host four matches at the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™.

The demolition process began in October, while excavation work started during the same period continues apace. The next phase of construction, which according to the firm responsible is scheduled to begin before the turn of the year, will comprise the laying of the new stadium’s foundations.
The material from the demolished buildings is being treated to enable it to be reused both in the new stadium’s foundations as well as in the construction site’s access roads. A concrete manufacturing plant is also being set up.
There are currently 382 workers employed in the construction of the Arena das Dunas. Last Saturday, construction workers marked the end of the first phase of work by playing a friendly match in the area where the pitch surface is going to be laid.
The first goal of the game and as a result in the history of the new stadium was scored by canteen maintenance man Gilmar Ramos de Araujo, who celebrated his strike in suitably exuberant fashion. “It’s really exciting for me to have scored the first ever goal at the Arena das Dunas,” said Ramos de Araujo afterwards.