The Millennium Stadium (Welsh: Stadium y Millennium), is the national stadium of Wales, located in Cardiff. It is the home of the Wales national rugby union team and has also staged games of the Wales national football team. Initially built to host the 1999 Rugby World Cup, it has gone on to host many other large-scale events. Until 1969, Cardiff RFC and Wales both played their home matches on the same pitch at Cardiff Arms Park, but all this changed in the 1969–70 season. As a result of an agreement between Cardiff Athletic Club and the WRU, the National Stadium project had established that a new stadium for international matches and events was required, with Cardiff RFC moving to a new purpose built stadium on the original cricket ground at the site of the former Cardiff Arms Park stadium. Construction involved the demolition of a number of buildings, primarily the existing National Stadium (Cardiff Arms Park), Wales Empire Pool (swimming pool) in Wood Street, Cardiff Empire Telephone Exchange building in Park Street, the newly built Territorial Auxiliary & Volunteer Reserve building in Park Street, and the Social Security offices in Westgate Street.
My visit to the Millennium Stadium was to watch the 2002 Football League Cup Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Blackburn Rovers. For the period that Wembley Stadium was being rebuilt, cup finals and other big matches were staged in Cardiff. On a wet Sunday afternoon, the retractable roof was closed to cover the stadium. Blackburn opened the scoring with a goal from Matt Jansen, but Christian Ziege soon equalised for Spurs. Andy Cole scored the winner in the 68th minute with a typical instinctive strike after mistakes in the Spurs defence. Les Ferdinand could have made the match square after a close one-on-one chance with Friedel, but failed to make anything of it. In the final minute Teddy Sheringham controversially had a claim for a penalty turned down by referee Graham Poll.