Estadio Azteca

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Estadio Azteca
Aztec Stadium
El Coloso de Santa Úrsula
Logotipo Estadio Azteca.png
Outside part of the stadium
Location Mexico City, Mexico
Public transit Estadio Azteca
Xochimilco Light Rail
Owner Televisa
Operator Club América
Executive suites 856
Capacity 105,064[1]
Record attendance Football: 119,853 (Mexico-Brazil, 7 July 1968)[2]
Boxing: 132,247 (Julio César Chávez vs Greg Haugen, 20 February 1993)[3]
Field size 105 m × 68 m (344 ft × 223 ft)
Surface Grass
Construction
Broke ground 1961
Opened 29 May 1966
Renovated 1985
Construction cost MXN$ 260 million
Architect Pedro Ramírez Vázquez
Rafael Mijares Alcérreca
Tenants
Mexico national football team (1966–present)
América (Liga MX) (1966–present)
Necaxa (1966–70 and 1982–2003)
Atlante (1966–82, 1996–2001 and 2004–2007)
Universidad Nacional (1967–1969)
Atlético Español (1970–1982)
Cruz Azul (1971–1996)
American Bowl (1994, 1997–1998, and 2000–2001)
NFL International Series (2005)

The Estadio Azteca (Spanish pronunciation: [esˈtaðjo asˈteka]) is a football stadium located in the suburb of Santa Ursula in Mexico City, Mexico. Since its opening in 1966, the stadium has been the official home stadium of the Mexican professional football club América and the official national stadium of the Mexico national football team.

Regarded as one of the most famous and iconic football stadiums in the world,[4][5][6][7][8] the stadium has the honour of being the first stadium in the world to have hosted two FIFA World Cup Finals.[9] In the 1970 World Cup final, Brazil defeated Italy 4–1 and in the 1986 World Cup final, Argentina defeated West Germany 3–2. It also hosted the 1986 quarter-final match between Argentina and England in which Diego Maradona scored both the "Hand of God goal" and the "Goal of the Century". The stadium also hosted the "Game of the Century", when Italy defeated West Germany 4–3 in extra time in one of the 1970 semifinal matches. The stadium was also the principal venue for the football tournament of the 1968 Summer Olympics.[10]

With an official capacity of 105,064, it is the largest stadium in Mexico, the third-largest stadium in the American continent, the sixth-largest in the world and the largest association football-specific stadium in the world.[11]

History[edit]

An internal view of the stadium

The Estadio Azteca was designed by architects Pedro Ramírez Vázquez and Rafael Mijares Alcérreca and broke ground in 1961. The inaugural match was between Club América and Torino F.C. on 29 May 1966, with a capacity for 107,494 spectators. The first goal was scored by Brazilian Arlindo Dos Santos and the second one by Brazilian José Alves "Zague"; later, the Italians tied the game, which ended in 2–2 draw. Mexican president Gustavo Díaz Ordaz made the initial kick and FIFA president Sir Stanley Rous was the witness.

A modern illumination system was inaugurated on 5 June 1966 with the first night game played between Spanish side Valencia C.F. and Necaxa. The first goal of the match was scored by Honduran José Cardona for Valencia. Roberto Martínez o Caña Brava became the first Mexican to score a goal in the stadium after scoring for Necaxa. The result was a 3–1 victory for Valencia.

In 1978 the stadium hosted the final of the Copa Interamericana between América and Boca Juniors of Argentina, and would host a final again in 1990 between América and Club Olimpia of Paraguay.

The Estadio Azteca is also the site in which Pelé and Diego Maradona (during the 1970 and 1986 FIFA World Cup) lifted the trophy for the last time (The Jules Rimet Trophy and the current FIFA World Cup Trophy, respectively).

Estadio Azteca has also been used for musical performances throughout its history. Michael Jackson (5 sold-out shows in 1993),[12] U2 (in 2006 and 2011), Luis Miguel (in 2002), Elton John, Maná, Juan Gabriel, Gloria Estefan, Jaguares, Lenny Kravitz, *Nsync, Hanson, Ana Gabriel, and The Three Tenors all have become part of the stadium's main spectacle. The stadium has also been used for political events, including Mexican president Felipe Calderón's campaign closure in 2006, as well as religious events, like the appearance of Pope John Paul II in 1999.[13]

Name[edit]

Estadio Azteca prior to a kickoff

The name "Azteca" is a tribute to the Aztec heritage of Mexico City. The stadium is now owned by Mexican TV consortium Televisa. In order to avoid people associating the stadium's name with that of its rival TV Azteca, Televisa officially changed the stadium's name to Guillermo Cañedo, a top executive, long-time football advocate at Televisa and prominent member of the executive committee of FIFA. The change took place in 1997, following Cañedo's death on 20 January 1997.[14] However the change did not go well with the general population, who generally refused to refer to the stadium by its formally new name. Following a schism where two of Cañedo's sons, who worked at Televisa, switched camps and went to TV Azteca,[15] Televisa quietly returned the stadium's name to its original version. Some people did not even notice, as they usually referred to the stadium as "Azteca" during the name change.

The stadium has been given the nickname "Coloso de Santa Ursula" which in English means "Colossus of Saint Ursula", due to its large structure. Santa Ursula refers to the part of town where the stadium resides in Mexico City.[16]

Access and entrance[edit]

It is served by the Azteca station on the Xochimilco Light Rail line. This line is an extension of the Mexico City metro system which begins at Metro Tasqueña station and ends in the Xochimilco Light Rail Station.

Tickets are available, up to kick-off times, from the ticket office which is located at the front of the stadium, just down the exit ramps from the Azteca station. Tickets start from as little as 100 pesos (9 U.S. Dollars as of 2013). For bigger matches such as Club América's games against Chivas de Guadalajara, Cruz Azul and UNAM Pumas where sellouts are common, numerous touts circulate offering tickets at competitive prices.

A panorama of Estadio Azteca during a Club América match (Mexico City) vs Tecos (Guadalajara),

Monuments and memorials[edit]

Plaque commemorating the "Game of the Century"

A commemorative bronze plaque of the "Game of the Century" played between Italy and West Germany, as well as Diego Maradona's "Goal of the Century" against England.

There is also a commemorative plaque with the names of the first goal scorer in the inaugural match and in the first match played at night.

Notable events[edit]

Spectators outside Estadio Azteca

Estadio Azteca has hosted a variety of international sporting competitions, including:

Football[edit]

1970 FIFA World Cup[edit]

Date Time (CDT) Team #1 Result Team #2 Round Spectators
May 31, 1970 12.00  Mexico 0–0  Soviet Union Group A 107,160
June 3, 1970 16.00  Belgium 3–0  El Salvador 92,205
June 6, 1970 16.00  Soviet Union 4–1  Belgium 95,261
June 7, 1970 12.00  Mexico 4–0  El Salvador 103,058
June 10, 1970 16.00  Soviet Union 2–0  El Salvador 89,979
June 11, 1970 12.00  Mexico 1–0  Belgium 108,192
June 14, 1970 12.00  Soviet Union 0–1 (AET)  Uruguay Quarter-finals 26,085
June 17, 1970 16.00  Italy 4–3 (AET)  West Germany Semi-finals 102,444
June 20, 1970 16.00  Uruguay 0–1  West Germany Third Place 104,403
June 21, 1970 12.00  Brazil 4–1  Italy Final 107,412

1975 Pan American Games[edit]

Date Team #1 Result Team #2 Round
October 13, 1975  Cuba 1–1  Uruguay Preliminary Round - Group C
October 14, 1975  El Salvador 4–1  Nicaragua Preliminary Round - Group D
 Brazil 3–1  Costa Rica
October 15, 1975  Costa Rica 5–1  Nicaragua
 Brazil 2-0  El Salvador
 Cuba 0-3  Bolivia Preliminary Round - Group C
October 17, 1975  Bolivia 0–1  Uruguay
 Costa Rica 0-0  El Salvador Preliminary Round - Group D
 Brazil 14–0  Nicaragua
October 19, 1975  Brazil 5–1  Bolivia Second Round - Group C
 Argentina 6-0  Mexico
October 21, 1975  Argentina 0-0  Brazil
 Mexico 3–1  Bolivia
October 23, 1975  Brazil 4-0  Mexico
 Argentina 7-0  Bolivia
October 25, 1975  Brazil 2–0  United States Bronze Medal Match
October 25, 1975  Argentina 1-1 (AET)  Uruguay Gold Medal Final Match

Argentina and Uruguay shared title

1983 FIFA World Youth Championship[edit]

Date Time (CDT) Team #1 Result Team #2 Round Spectators
June 2, 1983 21.00  Mexico 1–1  Australia Group A 108,900
June 4, 1983 12.00  China PR 0-5  Argentina Group C 19,376
June 5, 1983 12.00  South Korea 2–1  Mexico Group A 71,198
June 8, 1983 20.00  Mexico 0–1  Scotland 86,582
June 11, 1983 12.00  Scotland 0-1  Poland Quarterfinal 11,986
June 15, 1983 17.00  Poland 0-1  Argentina Semifinal 39,896
June 19, 1983 12.00  Argentina 0-1  Brazil Final 110,000

1986 FIFA World Cup[edit]

Date Time (CDT) Team #1 Result Team #2 Round Spectators
May 31, 1986 12.00  Bulgaria 1–1  Italy Group A 96,000
June 3, 1986 12.00  Belgium 1–2  Mexico Group B 110,000
June 7, 1986 12.00  Mexico 1–1  Paraguay 114,600
June 11, 1986 12.00  Iraq 0–1  Mexico 103,580
June 15, 1986 12.00  Mexico 2–0  Bulgaria Round of 16 114,580
June 18, 1986 12.00  England 3–0  Paraguay 98,728
June 22, 1986 12.00  Argentina 2–1  England Quarterfinal 114,580
June 25, 1986 16.00  Argentina 2–0  Belgium Semifinal 114,500
June 29, 1986 12.00  Argentina 3-2  West Germany Final 114,600

1999 FIFA Confederations Cup[edit]

Date Time (CDT) Team #1 Result Team #2 Round Spectators
July 25, 1999 12.00  Bolivia 1–3  Egypt Group A 85,000
14.00  Mexico 5-1  Saudi Arabia
July 27, 1999 18.00  Saudi Arabia 0-0  Bolivia 65,000
20.30  Mexico 2-2  Egypt
July 29, 1999 18.00  Egypt 3–2  Saudi Arabia 15,000
20.30  Mexico 1-0  Brazil 55,000
August 1, 1999 12.00  Mexico 1–0 (AET)  United States Semifinal 82,000
August 4, 1999 21.00  Mexico 4-3  Brazil Final 110,000

2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup[edit]

Date Time (CDT) Team #1 Result Team #2 Round Spectators
July 10, 2011 15.00  Brazil 3–4  Germany Third Place Match 94,379
18.00  Uruguay 0-2  Mexico Final 98,943

Boxing and American Football[edit]

Concerts[edit]

  • In October and November 1993, Michael Jackson finished the Dangerous World Tour with five sold out shows at this stadium, for a total of 500,000 people (circa 100,000 per show, more than any other artist or band, Mexican or International).
  • On 14 May 2011, Irish rock band U2 presented the 360° Tour scoring the most-attended concert on the tour with a total attendance of 110,000 people.
  • On 8 May 2012, Paul McCartney performed at the Estadio Azteca for the first time in his career, in a non-sold-out concert for 53,000 people.[17]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Estadio Azteca". esmas.com. 2011-01-08. Retrieved 2011-01-08. 
  2. ^ "El Monumental le gana a la Bombonera como estadio más emblemático". 12 April 2013. 
  3. ^ "StadiumDB: Estadio Azteca". Retrieved 5 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "Ranking the Top 10 Most Iconic Stadiums in World Football". Bleacherreport. Retrieved 5 April 2013. 
  5. ^ "Classic Stadium: Estadio Azteca". FIFA.com. 
  6. ^ Smart, Tony. "10 of the world's best sports venues". CNN. Retrieved 9 March 2012. 
  7. ^ Wilson, Steve. "World Soccer Stadiums". ESPN. Retrieved 4 June 2007. 
  8. ^ Gordon, Aaron. "Mexico wins Mexican-American stadium war". Buzzfeed. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  9. ^ "Mexico's historical stadium". FIFA.com. Retrieved 31 May 2012. 
  10. ^ 1968 Summer Olympics official report. Volume 2. Part 1. pp. 78–79.
  11. ^ "The 10 Largest Football Stadiums In The World". Soccerlens. Retrieved 24 November 2009. 
  12. ^ "Cronología Estadio Azteca". Retrieved 2007-09-13. 
  13. ^ "Pide Juan Pablo II "superar" deficiencias en el progreso social". Retrieved 2007-10-12. 
  14. ^ "FIFA Senior Vice President Guillermo Cañedo has died". FIFA.com. Retrieved 21 January 1997. 
  15. ^ Martínez, César. "Cañedo Whites go to TV Azteca". La Jornada. Retrieved 13 September 2007. 
  16. ^ Rai, Asha (14 March 2014). "Estadio Azteca: Seasons in the Sun". The Times of India. Retrieved 17 March 2014. 
  17. ^ http://www.webcitation.org/query?id=1339676569778155&date=@0&fromform=1

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 19°18′10.48″N 99°9′1.59″W / 19.3029111°N 99.1504417°W / 19.3029111; -99.1504417

Preceded by
National Stadium
Tokyo
Summer Olympics
Football Men's Finals (Estadio Azteca)

1968
Succeeded by
Olympiastadion
Munich
Preceded by
Wembley Stadium
London
FIFA World Cup
Final Venue

1970
Succeeded by
Olympiastadion
Munich
Preceded by
Santiago Bernabéu
Madrid
FIFA World Cup
Final Venue

1986
Succeeded by
Stadio Olimpico
Rome
Preceded by
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Los Angeles
CONCACAF Gold Cup
Final Venue

1993
Succeeded by
Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Los Angeles
Preceded by
King Fahd II Stadium
Riyadh
FIFA Confederations Cup
Final Venue

1999
Succeeded by
International Stadium Yokohama
Yokohama
Preceded by
Rose Bowl
Pasadena
CONCACAF Gold Cup
Final Venue

2003
Succeeded by
Giants Stadium
East Rutherford
Preceded by
first venue
National Football League
Host stadium of international regular season game
San Francisco 49ers v. Arizona Cardinals

2 October 2005
Succeeded by
Wembley Stadium, London, England
New York Giants v. Miami Dolphins
28 October 2007