• Carl Froch v George Groves II

Wembley confirmed as Froch-Groves II venue

ESPN staff
March 3, 2014
Carl Froch secured a controversial ninth-round stoppage win over George Groves in November © Getty Images

Wembley Stadium has been confirmed as the venue for Carl Froch and George Groves' highly-anticipated world title rematch on May 31.

Reports surfaced on Monday that Wembley would be chosen with Arsenal's Emirates Stadium and Nottingham Forest's City Ground losing out in the race to host the fight.

Promoter Eddie Hearn had promised "an audacious" choice of arena for the fight; Froch-Groves II will be the first bout to take place at the new incarnation of the stadium, which has a capacity of 80,000.

Challenger Groves was excited by the choice, with the added bonus of Wembley being situated in his home town.

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"It's brilliant news - fantastic, for many reasons. It's a huge fight and an impressive stadium like Wembley tops the list. It's going to be a great night," Groves told Sky Sports News.

"I was at the Ricky Hatton fight [when he fought in front of a post-war British boxing record 55,000 at the City of Manchester Stadium] and remember thinking 'Wow, what an atmosphere'. As a spectacle it was amazing.

"It will be electric and the fact it's in my home city of London is a massive added bonus for me. Hats off to Eddie Hearn for managing to secure Wembley.

"We needed a big venue in a big city, not little Nottingham, and I can't wait to be crowned world champion in my home city. Carl Froch has plenty more to worry about than the fight being in London."

Froch agreed choosing Wembley was the right decision and is ready to "make history" in front of what he expects to be a bumper crowd.

"It is fantastic because Wembley can hold up to 80,000 fans - talk about making history. Everyone's excited about it," Froch said. "The job I'm going to do on George Groves - I didn't want anyone telling me I beat him because I had home advantage.

"In all honestly, Nottingham wouldn't have been able to cater for it as it only holds 30,000 or so and we would have been robbing so many fans of seeing such an event."

Wembley staff will face a fight to prepare the stadium in time, with England playing a farewell friendly against Peru there on May 30 before they head to Brazil for the World Cup. Staff will work through the night, laying protective covering over the pitch.

Froch retained his WBA and IBF super-middleweight titles with a controversial ninth-round stoppage win over Groves in November. Referee Howard Foster was criticised for his decision at the Phones 4u Arena in Manchester with Groves successfully appealing to the IBF for a rematch.

The biggest bout ever to be held at Wembley was Henry Cooper's famous clash with Cassius Clay in 1963, which drew a crowd of 40,000.

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