The 150th anniversary fixtures will be hosted at Abbey Stadium Steve Daniels / CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED /

The Varsity football matches will return to Cambridge United’s Abbey Stadium, with both the men’s and women’s matches taking place there on the 15th of March 2024.

The Abbey last hosted the Oxbridge clash in 2022, while last year’s matches were held at Newmarket Town Football Club.

Nick Brooking, Director of Sport at the University of Cambridge, said: “The University is delighted that Cambridge United have agreed to stage the Varsity football matches at the Abbey Stadium in the year of the 150th anniversary of the first Varsity match.”

“While I am sure there will be many other joint activities to look forward to as part of this partnership, playing both the Women’s and Men’s matches on a Friday night will be a great occasion and we hope the community will come and support the teams,” he continued.

Cambridge United and Cambridge University announced a strategic partnership in October, stating a shared aim “to help the wider city and the community, supporters, and current and prospective students”.

At the time, Prof Bhaskar Vira, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education, said: “The University is a global institution, but it is also right at the heart of our local community here in Cambridge, working with others in partnership.”

The announcement of the match’s venue follows the news that the Varsity Rugby Matches will move from Twickenham for the first time in 103 years, with next year’s matches being hosted at the Saracens’ StoneX Stadium.


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The decision to move away from Twickenham was explained by “a decline in ticket sales and the increasing complexity of staging an event” at the 82,000-seater stadium.

Debate is ongoing regarding the location of the Varsity cricket matches, which are currently tied to Lord’s until 2027.

This partnership has been described as elitist, with some arguing that the venue should be used to host more matches between state schools. Stephen Fry, the former President of Marylebone Cricket Club (who own Lord’s), proposed scrapping the Varsity matches at Lord’s back in 2022.

Fry said at the time: “I’m not being all woke and wet-blankety [...] It’s about opening it up to more schools.”