FIFA World Cups are special occasions on the footballing calendar that come around once every four years. Ever since the first World Cup final in Uruguay to the last in South Africa, the title match has been staged in various historic arenas which have since been part of the World Cup folklore. SportzWiki takes a trip down memory lane and here is the second part of our compilation of the stadiums that hosted the final in the past 19 editions.
1962 FIFA World Cup: Estadio Nacional, Santiago
Chile’s largest stadium was the setting for Brazil’s second consecutive World Cup triumph as they defeated Yugoslavia 3-1 in the majestic Estadio Nacional in the heart of the capital city of Santiago. Filled with capacities well beyond its actual limit of 47,000, the stadium witnessed some historic matches during the tournament, most notably the notorious ‘Battle of Santiago’ between Italy and Chile. The stadium is home to the Chile national football team as well as Chilean giants Universidad.
1966 FIFA World Cup Final: Wembley Stadium, London
The Old Wembley was the stage for England’s one and only World Cup triumph, as the Three Lions laid their hands on the hallowed Jules Rimet trophy after controversially defeating West Germany 4-2 in a packed Wembley Stadium. Also one of FIFA’s classic football stadiums, the Wembley Stadium has been renovated and reconstructed and was finally reopened as a completely new stadium in 2007. The new Wembley is home to the England national football team.
1970 FIFA World Cup Final: Estadio Azteca, Mexico City
Brazil completed a hat-trick of World Cup wins in the Americas when they defeated Italy 4-1 in the impressive Estadio Azteca in the capital city of New Mexico. Well over a million people watched the drama unfold on the day of the final. The Azteca ,as it is popularly known as, is regarded as one of the most iconic stadiums in the world and plays home to the Mexican national football team as well as Club America.
1974 FIFA World Cup Final: Olympiastadion, Munich
West Germany hosted their first ever World Cup finals in 1974, and fate had it that the hosts turned out victorious against the much-fancied Netherlands by a slender margin of 2-1 at the famous Olympic Stadium in Munich. The Olympiastadion, which was home to Bayern Munich and 1860 Munich until the newer Allianz Arena was built, holds a capacity of 70,000 and was also used for the 1972 Munich Olympics.
1978 FIFA World Cup Final: Estadio Monumental, Buenos Aires
Argentina too hosted their first ever World Cup four years on and it was the Estadio Monumental in the capital of Buenos Aires that witnessed the home side finally lift their first ever World Cup, beating Netherlands 3-1 in the process. With a capacity of a little more than 65,000, El Monumental is home to the Argentine national football team as well as Argentine fabled club River Plate.
1982 FIFA World Cup Final: Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid
Spain too got into the act of hosting a World Cup and it was Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu that hosted the final between Italy and West Germany; the Italians running out 3-1 winners in a packed stadium. The Bernabeu is one of the most famous football stadiums in the world, and occasionally hosts the Spanish national football team. It is the home of ten-time European champions Real Madrid.
Part III coming soon….
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