The Maracana Stadium or Estádio do Maracanã
The 2014 World Cup Final will be held in the Maracanã stadium, 1 of the Largest and arguably most famous stadiums in the world! The Estádio do Maracanã as it’s known in Brazil, is set to become only the second stadium in History to be used for 2 World Cup Finals! The first time it hosted a World Cup Final was back in 1950, the Maracanã was built specifically for the 1950 world cup. The 1’st official game took place on June 24, 1950. In the opening game Brazil beat Mexico 4-0 with 2 goals by Ademir, with Baltasar and Jair both scoring 1 a peice. The match was reffed by George Reader from England 🙂 5 of Brazil’s 6 games in the 1950 World Cup were played at the Maracanã. At the final, almost 200,000 (199,854 to be exact) fans were officially in attendance. Sadly it wasn’t to be Brazil’s tournament though, they were beaten 2-1 by Uruguay in the final group game. This match is still remembered in Brazil and known colloquially as “the Maracanazo”.
Over the years the Maracanã has undergone many changes. It used to hold some 200,000 when it was almost all standing but as with many modern stadiums it has now been converted to an all seater following the death of 3 fans and more than 50 being injured when part of the stadium collapsed back in July 1992. The stadium is currently undergoing more renovations, in preparation for the 2014 World Cup. You can see below an artists impression of what it’s expected to look like upon completion..
Image courtesy of bodew.com
The Maracanã Stadium was actually proclaimed a national treasure and therefore can never be demolished. The stadium is steeped in history having seen the likes of Pele “The King of Football” (O Rei do Futebol) as he’s known, is said to have scored his 1000th career goal in the stadium back in 1969.