Estádio do Maracanã

Estádio do Maracanã

Infobox Stadium
stadium_name = Maracanã
nickname = Maraca

fullname = Estádio Jornalista Mário Filho
location = Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
coordinates = 22°54′43.80″S, 43°13′48.59″W
broke_ground = August 2 1948
built =
opened = June 16 1950
renovated = 2007
expanded =
closed =
demolished =
record attendance = 199,854 to 209,375
owner = Rio de Janeiro State Government
operator =
surface = Grass
construction_cost =
architect = Raphael Galvão
Pedro Paulo B. Bastos
Orlando Azevedo
Antônio Dias Carneiro
structural engineer =
services engineer =
project_manager =
main_contractors =
former_names =
tenants =

seating_capacity =
95,000cite web | title = Maracanã Sports Complex (Opening/Closing Ceremony) - Rio 2007 Pan American Games | url= | accessdate = 2007-06-20 | publisher=Brazilian Olympic Committee official website ]
dimensions =
110 x 75 m

The Estádio Jornalista Mário Filho, commonly called Estádio do Maracanã ("Maracanã stadium"), is an open-air stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Owned by the Rio de Janeiro State Government, it is named after the Maracanã neighbourhood in Rio de Janeiro. It was opened in 1950 to host the FIFA World Cup. Since then, it has mainly been used for football matches between the major football clubs in Rio de Janeiro, including Flamengo, Fluminense, Botafogo and Vasco da Gama. It has also hosted a number of concerts and other sporting events. Although the paid attendance at the final game of the 1950 FIFA World Cup was 199,500, the stadium currently seats 95,000 spectators. Despite the reduction in capacity it remains the largest stadium in South America, and the twelfth largest in the world.

It is due to host the World Cup Final in the 2014 World Cup, becoming the second stadium to host football's most important match twice after the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City.



After winning the right to host the 1950 FIFA World Cup, the Brazilian government sought to build a new stadium for the tournament. The plans for the stadium were drawn up by two Brazilian architects, Raphaël Galvão and Pedro Paulo Bernardes Bastos. The first stone was laid at the site of the stadium on August 2, 1948. [cite web | title = Soccer Hall: 1950 FIFA World Cup | url= | accessdate = 2007-03-23 |] With the first World Cup game scheduled to be played on June 24, 1950, this left little under two years to finish building. However, work quickly fell behind schedule, prompting FIFA to send Dr. Ottorino Barassi, the head of the Italian FA, who had organized the 1934 World Cup to help in Rio de Janeiro.


The opening match of the stadium took place on June 16, 1950. Rio de Janeiro All-Stars beat São Paulo All-Stars 3-1; Didi became the player to score the first ever goal at the stadium.cite web | title = Maracanã, the largest stadium of the world | url= | accessdate = 2007-03-23 | ] Despite hosting a match, the stadium was still unfinished. It lacked toilet facilities and a press stand, and still looked like a building site. It was said that the stadium could house 200,000 standing spectators, making it one of the largest stadiums in the world at the time. Despite being unfinished, FIFA allowed matches to be played at the venue, and on June 24, 1950, the first World Cup match took place. Brazil beat Mexico with a final score 4-0, with Ademir becoming the first scorer of a competitive goal at the stadium with his 30th minute strike. 81,000 spectators attended the game. Eventually, Brazil progressed to the final round, facing Uruguay in the final match of the tournament on July 16, 1950. Brazil only needed a draw to finish top of the group, but Uruguay won the game 2-1, shocking the thousands who attended the game. This match has since been known as the "Maracanaço" (or in Spanish, "Maracanazo"). The official attendance of the game was 199,500, with the actual attendance estimated to be about 210,000. [cite web | title = Futebol; the Brazilian way of life | url= | accessdate = 2007-03-23 ] [cite web | title = Maracanã, the largest stadium of the world | url= | accessdate = 2007-03-23 | ]

Post World Cup years

On March 21, 1954 a new official attendance record was set in the game between Brazil and Paraguay, after 183,513 spectators entered the stadium with a ticket and 177.656 in Fla-Flu (1963). In 1963, stadium authorities replaced the square goal posts with round ones, but it was still two years before the stadium would be fully completed. In 1965, 17 years after construction began, the stadium was finally finished.

Since the World Cup left Brazil in 1950, the Maracanã Stadium has mainly been used for club games involving four major football clubs in Rio— Vasco, Botafogo, Flamengo and Fluminense. The stadium has also hosted numerous domestic football cup finals, most notably the Copa do Brasil and the Campeonato Carioca.

In September 1966, Mário Filho, a Brazilian journalist, columnist and sports figure, died, leading to the administrators of the stadium renaming the stadium after him to "Estádio Jornalista Mário Filho". However, the nickname of "Maracanã" continued to be used. Mario Filho was a prominent campaigner who was largely responsible for the stadium originally being built. In 1969, Pelé scored the 1,000th goal of his career at the Maracanã against Vasco in front of 125,000 spectators. In 1989, Zico scored his final goal for Flamengo at the Maracanã, taking his goal tally at the stadium to 333, a record that still stands as of 2007.

Modern day

On July 19, 1992, an upper stand in the stadium collapsed, leading to the death of three supporters and 50 more being injured. [cite web | title = Sports Disasters | url= | accessdate = 2007-03-23 ] Following the disaster, the stadium's capacity was greatly reduced as it was converted to an all-seater stadium in the late 1990s. Despite this, the ground was classified as real estate in 1998, meaning that it could not be demolished. The stadium hosted the first ever FIFA Club World Cup final match between Vasco da Gama and Corinthians, which Corinthians won on penalties.

Following its 50th anniversary in 2000, the stadium underwent renovations which would increase its full capacity to around 103,000. After years of planning and nine months of closure between 2005 and 2006, the stadium was reopened in January 2007 with an all-seated capacity of 95,000.

The stadium is part of a complex that includes a gymnasium known by the name of "Maracanãzinho", which stands for "the little Maracanã".

Non-footballing events

*In 1952, an exhibition basketball match took place, involving the Harlem Globetrotters.
*Pope John Paul II has also visited the stadium. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the stadium, on January 26, 1981,
*Frank Sinatra played to a crowd of 189,000, prior to a friendly Brazil football match against The USSR.
* In 1983, a volleyball match between Brazil and the USSR played at the ground.
*On April 21, 1990, Paul McCartney played his "World Tour" concert in the Maracanã stadium to a record crowd of over 185,000 people - his largest single concert crowd ever.
*In January 1991, the stadium hosted the second edition of Rock in Rio, with Prince, Guns N' Roses, George Michael, INXS, a-ha and New Kids on the Block as headliners. The event lasted for nine nights, from January 18 to 27, with a day off on Monday, Jan. 21. Prince, Guns N' Roses and George Michael headlined two nights each, while the other main acts held top spot only once.


On October 8, 2006 the famous Mexican pop band, RBD performed in the stadium with a crowd of more than 70,000 fans, and recorder a live album called Live in Rio.

Rush's concert is documented on their live album Rush in Rio. Sting's was the very first from his Nothing Like the Sun world tour, while Kiss, back in 1983, made their last appearance wearing the trademark make-up.

In July 13, 2007, the stadium hosted the opening ceremonies of the XV Pan American Games. On December 8, Maracanã was the site of the only Brazilian date of The Police's 2007 world tour. The concert happened a little over 20 years after Sting's solo performance at the stadium. Therefore, it gave him the distinction of being the only international popstar to play dates at Maracanã in distinct occasions.

Madonna will perform at a now sold-out show in Maracana on December 14, and 15 2008 as part of her Sticky & Sweet Tour.


External links

*pt icon [ Official Maracanã website]
* [ Photo Gallery of Museum and Game @ The Rio de Janeiro Photo Guide]
* [ Maracanã video 2008]

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