Kim Il-sung Stadium
Kim Il-sung Stadium from the west
|Former names||Kirimri Stadium
|Location||Pyongyang, North Korea|
|Surface||Artificial turf, running tracks|
|North Korea national football team
North Korea women's national football team
Pyongyang City Sports Club
Kigwancha Sports Club
|Kim Il-sung Stadium|
|Revised Romanization||Gim Il-seong Gyeonggijang|
|McCune–Reischauer||Kim Il-sŏng Kyŏnggijang|
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Kim Il-sung Stadium was originally built as the Girimri Stadium (기림리공설운동장) in 1926. This stadium held the annual Kyung-Pyong Football Match between Kyungsung FC and Pyongyang FC during the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s.
After the division of Korea, it was used as a venue for speeches by politicians, and it was the site of Kim Il-sung's first speech after returning from exile on 14 October 1945. Most of the stadium was destroyed during the 1950-1953 Korean War, mostly by U.S. aerial bombing of the capital city during those years. Rebuilt in 1969, it was then called Moranbong Stadium, but in April 1982 it was renovated and renamed in honour of Kim Il-sung. It is used mainly for football matches, and hosted the mass games until the 1990s (now held in Rungnado May Day Stadium).
Today, the Kim Il-sung stadium is used as the home ground for the North Korea national football team, the North Korea women's national football team and the Pyongyang City Sports Club and Kigwancha Sports Club.
In 2008, on two occasions, a 2010 World Cup qualifying match between North and South Korea, due to be played in Pyongyang, had to be moved to Shanghai when authorities in the North refused to allow the South Korean national anthem to be played in Kim Il-sung Stadium, or the flag of South Korea to be flown, as North and South Korea have never granted each other formal diplomatic recognition.
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