Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

FIFA World Cup Venues

Football is one of the most entertaining sports in the world. Millions of people are absolutely crazy about the game. In fact, the sport creates a kind of atmosphere at the venue, and the excitement and thrill of each game is palpable. It might be surprising, but, there are even visually impaired football fans who follow every match of their favourite teams, but, never get to ‘see’ a single goal. Take for example Alan Mabert who has been going to Highbury for 30 years, just to feel the atmosphere. True enough, the environment inside a stadium, with thousands of fans clad in the colours of their favourite teams, shouting at the top of their voices and waving flags, is part of the fun of watching a football game, and this excitement manifolds when during the FIFA world cups. The stadiums which serve as the venue of the FIFA world cups have an important part to play in enhancing such settings. So, let us look at some of the Greatest FIFA World Cup Venues:

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1. Stadio Olimpico, Italy

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Located between the Vatican City and Rome, the Stadio Olimpico has been the popular venue for some of the greatest Italian sporting events, the most highlighted one being the FIFA world cup 1990. Three matches in the group phase and three in the knockout phase were held here, including the final. Constructed by architect Enrico Del Debbio under the instruction of Benito Mussolini, it was inaugurated on 17th March, 1953. It has a capacity of 72,698. Some other important international sports events that have taken place here are 4 European Cup/UEFA Champions League finals in 1977, 1984, 1996 and 2009, 1960 Olympic Games, 1968 and 1980 UEFA European Championship, World Athletics Championship, Six Nations rugby championship, etc.

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2. El Monumental – Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio, Argentina

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Located in Buenos Aeres, the ‘Monumental’ is one of the three leading football stadiums in South America, and is home to the very powerful Club Atlentico River Plate. It hosted the 1978 FIFA World Cup Argentina Group stage, second round, Play-Off for Third Place and the Final. Besides, it has also hosted the Copa America finals in 1987 and 2011, Copa Libertadores finals in 1962, 1966, 1976, 1985, 1986 and 1996, the 1997 SupercopaSudamericana final, 2003 Copa Sudamericana final and 1987 Copa Interamericana final. Its construction began in 1936, with Jose Aslan and Hector Ezcurra as the original architects. It was inaugurated on 25th May, 1938. The stadium has the capacity of seating 61,321 spectators.

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3. Signal-Iduna-Park, Germany

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Commonly known by the name Westfalenstadion, this stadium is where the German national football team feels most at home. Located in Dortmund in Germany, the Signal-Iduna-Park was designed by architect Planungsgruppe Drahtler on a rather tight budget. It was inaugurated 2nd April, 1974, after 3 years spent in the process of construction. It has a seating capacity of 65,829 spectators. The stadium has hosted some of the most remarkable international football matches. These include the 1974 FIFA World Cup Germany Group matches, for which it was originally built. Besides, it also hosted the 2006 FIFA World Cup Germany Group matches, round of 16 and semi-final, the UEFA Cup Final 2001, etc.

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4. Rasunda Stadium, Sweden

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Apart from California’s Rose Bowl, Rasunda is the only venue that hosted the finals of both the FIFA world cup and FIFA Women’s world cup. It is located in Solna near Stokholm, and is reputed for putting its spectators on top of all the action. Architects Birger Borgström and Sven Ivar Lind led to the construction of this phenomenal stadium which was inaugurated on 17th May, 1937. Its original seating capacity is 40,000. The important sports events it has hosted include 1958 FIFA World Cup final, 1958 FIFA World Cup semi-final, 1958 FIFA World Cup quarter-final, 1958 FIFA World Cup group matches, FIFA Women’s World Cup Sweden 1995 final, UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup final 1998, UEFA European Championship 1992, etc.

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5. Santiago Bernabeu, Spain

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Located in the heart of the hustle and bustle of Madrid, the capital and largest city of Spain, Santiago Bernabeu is owned by the very legal Club of the Century, i.e. Real Madrid. Its construction work was started in 1944, by Jose Maria Castell, Manuel Munoz Monasterio and Luis AlemanySoler who were the original architects, and was inaugurated on 14th December, 1947. Its seating capacity, which was original 121,000 up until 1954, was changed to 90,800 in 1982, and then to 75,328 in 1998. It has been the venue of some of the most memorable events, including 1982 FIFA World Cup final, 3 matches of the 1982 FIFA World Cup second round, UEFA European Championship 1964, 3 European Cup finals in the years 1957, 1959 and 1980, etc.

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6. Estadio Azteca, Mexico

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

In 1974, Helmut Schon, the erstwhile coach of the football team of West Germany, said that the only stadium in the world better than Germany’s Signal-Iduna-Park Stadium is the Estadio Azteca. Historical shots by the likes of Pele and Maradona were made in this fabled stadium. Located in Mexico City, architects Pedro RamírezVásquez and Rafael Mijares led to the commencement of the construction works in 1962, and the stadium was inaugurated on 29th May, 1966, and its original seating capacity was 114,600. Some of the greatest competitions hosted here were the 1968 Summer Olympics, 1970 FIFA World Cup, 1975 Pan American Games, 1983 FIFA World Youth Championship, 1986 FIFA World Cup, 1999 FIFA Confederations Cup, 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup, etc.

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7. Centenario, Uruguay

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

EstadioCentenario is witness to some of the greatest moments in the history of planet football. It is located in Montvideo, and has been the main stage of some of the most dramatic actions. The ambitious construction work of the stadium was begun by architect Juan Scasso in January, 1930 amodst economic crises, and surprisingly, the stadium was inaugurated just about 7 months later on 18th July, 1930. Its original seating capacity is 100,000. Some of the most unforgettable matches that this stadium hosted are 1930 FIFA World Cup Final, 1930 FIFA World Cup semi-finals and 1930 FIFA World Cup first phase. Besides, it also hosted Copa America four times in 1942, 1956, 1967 and 1995, as well as Intercontinental Cup final in 1960, 1961, 1966, 1967 and 1971, etc.

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8. Wembley Stadium, England

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

The Wembley Stadium is located in London. The original architecture designed by Sir John Simpson and Maxwell Ayerton, with a capacity of 127,000 and inaugurated on 23rd April, 1923, was revamped by Sir Norman Foster, and was inaugurated on 30th September with a seating capacity of 90,000. The stadium which doesn’t host club matches, has been the venue to some of the most remarkable matches like 1966 FIFA World Cup final, 1966 FIFA World Cup third-place match, 1966 FIFA World Cup semi-final, 1966 FIFA World Cup quarter-final, 1966 FIFA World Cup group matches, UEFA European Championship 1996, Olympic Football Tournament 1948, European Cup finals 1963, 1968, 1971, 1978 and 1992, UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup finals 1965 and 1993, etc.

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9. Rose Bowl, USA

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Located in Pasadena, USA, the Rose Bowl, besides the Rasunda Stadium in Sweden, boasts of playing host to both male and female FIFA world cups. Its construction began in 1921, and under the instructions of architect Myron Hunt, it was completed in two years, after which it was inaugurated on 1st January, 1923. Its original seating capacity of 57,000 has now been increased to 92,542. It first drew attention to itself when it hosted the action-filled FIFA final, 1994. Some other major matches it has hosted are 1994 FIFA World Cup play-off for third place, 1994 FIFA World Cup semi-final, 1994 FIFA World Cup second round, 1994 FIFA World Cup group matches FIFA Women’s World Cup USA 1999, Olympic Football Tournament 1984, Gold Cup 2002, etc.

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10. Maracanã – Estádio Jornalista Mário Filho, Brasil

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

Top 10 FIFA World Cup Venues

It is not surprising that Brazil has created history in football, and the EstádioJornalistaMárioFilho, or Maracanã, located in Rio de Janeiro, has witnessed such historical moments. With the architectural skills of Rafael Galvao, Pedro Paulo BernardesBastos, Orlando Azevedo and Antonio Dias Carneiro, its construction began in 1948 and was inaugurated on 24th July, 1950, with a seating capacity of 220,000 which was later brought down to 95,000. It has hosted matches like the 3 matches of Final Round of the 1950 FIFA World Cup, as well as 5 games of group matches, 2000 FIFA Club World Cup final, third place match and 6 games of group matches, 1989 Copa America, 1963 Intercontinental Cup final second leg, 1963 Intercontinental Cup final deciding match, etc.

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There are several other stadiums that have hosted FIFA world cup games, and also played host to other international leagues and sports events. StadeVélodrome, San Siro, Olympiastadion and Anfield are some of them. These stadiums not only host sports events, but sometimes also act as the venues for musical concerts.