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The 18 biggest soccer stadiums in the world

Business Insider | May 7, 2016, 11.30AM IST
Football - or "soccer", depending on where you live - is the most popular sport in the world, so it's no surprise the game is played in some of the biggest stadiums in the world.
The largest 18 football stadiums,measured by capacity, are located all over the globe.
In fact every continent other than Antarctica makes an appearance on the list. Asia has the most with six, while Europe has five.
Even nations countries like the USA and Australia - where football hasn't traditionally been hugely popular but is growing in appeal - landed in the top ten.
Check out the 18 biggest stadiums on earth below.

18. Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milan, Italy
Capacity: 80,018
Home team: Inter Milan; AC Milan
To kick off we have the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza — commonly known as the San Siro — which has the honour of playing host to two major Italian clubs. It's also one of the oldest venues on the list. Construction started all the way back in 1925.

17. Estadio Monumental, Lima, Peru

Capacity: 80,093
Home team: Universitario de Deportes
The largest stadium in South America — a continent famous for its love of football — Estadio Monumental has hosted a number of World Cup qualifiers since it was finished in 2000, and is sometimes used by the national team.

16. Shah Alam Stadium, Shah Alam, Malaysia

Capacity: 80,372
Home team: Selangor FA
One of the biggest venues in Asia, the Shah Alam stadium occasionally doubles as what might be the world's most magnificent go-kart circuit in the off season, run by Asian Formula 2000 Champion driver Ng Wai Leong.

15. Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia

Capacity: 81,000
Home team: Russia
The only venue on the list to require an artificial pitch thanks to the harsh Moscow weather, the Luzhniki stadium saw tragedy in 1982 when a stampede killed 66 people. It's currently being renovated for the 2018 World Cup.

14. Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, Madrid, Spain

Capacity: 81,044
Home teams: Spanish national team, and Real Madrid
Home to the world's richest football club, the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium opened in 1944 and has been hosting world class football ever since. Real Madrid's president Florentino Pérez once said "we want to make the Santiago Bernabéu the best stadium in the world," and made upgrades a priority when he began his role.

13. Stade de France, Paris, France

Capacity: 81,338
Home team: French national team
The only stadium in the world to host both a football and rugby World Cup final, the Stade de France saw its national football team winning on home soil in 1998. Like many on the list, the stadium often has the biggest music acts in the world playing when sport's not on.

12. Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund, Germany

Capacity: 81,359
Home team: Borussia Dortmund
Known as Westfalenstadion in Germany, the stadium is officially named Signal Iduna Park thanks to a sponsorship arrangement lasting until 2021. It first opening in 1974, and is now home to one of Germany's most successful clubs.

11. The ANZ Stadium, Australia

Capacity: 83,500
Home team: Australian national team
Known by locals as the Olympic Stadium, the ANZ was completed in 1999 as the main venue for the 2000 Olympic Games. Since then it's hosted a lot of football too, especially World Cup qualifiers.

10. Borg El Arab Stadium, Alexandria, Egypt

Capacity: 86,000
Home team: Egyptian national team
The Borg El Arab Stadium boasts a 200 capacity hotel for visiting teams, as well as a giant running track around the pitch perimeter for athletic events in the summer.

9. Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Capacity: 87,411
Home team: Malaysian national team
Initially built for the 1998 Commonwealth Games, the Bukit Jalil National Stadium has also hosted the AFC Asian Cup. If football's not your thing, you can also catch Disney On Ice here when it's in the area.

8. Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Jakarta, 

Capacity: 88,083
Home team: Indonesian national team
Finished in 1962, the "GBK Stadium" — as it is sometimes known — was funded partly by a loan from the Soviet Union. Some of the world's biggest clubs have played here as they toured the Asian continent.

7. Wembley Stadium, London, UK

Capacity: 90,000
Home team: English national team
The home of English football, Wembley was reconstructed between 2002-07, at an estimated cost of £757 million ($1.1 billion). Its arch can be seen for miles around West London, and when it's not hosting football games it's a world famous concert venue.

6. The Rose Bowl, Pasadena, USA

Capacity: 92,542
Home teams: Various qualifiers and exhibition matches
One of the USA's most famous stadiums, the Rose Bowl is also the country's biggest soccer stadium, playing home to the 1994 World Cup final and several qualifiers thereafter.

5. FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa

Capacity: 94,736
Home teams: South African national team and the Kaizer Chiefs
Also known as "Soccer City," the FNB (First National Bank) Stadium opened in 1989 before being renovated for the 2010 World Cup. Viewers of that tournament may recall the sounds of vuvuzelas ringing through the air.

4. Azadi Stadium, Tehran, Iran

Capacity: 95,225
Home teams: Iranian national team, Esteghlal FC, and Pesepolis FC
Opened in 1973, the Azadi Stadium was almost the main venue for the 1984 Olympic Games until political issues forced Iran to drop the bid. Apparently the architecture is designed to heighten noise, which can be intimidating for visiting teams.

3. Estadio Azteca, Mexico City, Mexico

Capacity: 95,500
Home teams: Mexican national team, and Club América
The first stadium to host two football World Cup Finals, Estadio Azteca was the venue of Diego Maradona's "Hand of God" goal in the competition's 1986 Quarter Finals. The stadium's name is a tribute to Mexico's Aztec heritage.

2. Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain

Capacity: 99,354
Home team: FC Barcelona
The second richest club team in the world also plays in the second biggest football stadium in the world. The venue also hosts a number of Catalan teams. Fans were polled in 2000 and voted to make the title "Camp Nou" official, rather than a nickname. It was previously called the Estadi del FC Barcelona.

1. Rungrado May Day Stadium, Pyongyang, North Korea

Capacity: 150,000
Home team: North Korean national team
The biggest stadium of any non-racing sport by some margin, North Korea's gigantic Rungrado May Day Stadium puts on massive shows celebrating the country and government when it's not being used for soccer. More ominously, reports suggest the stadium was also used as the site of an execution of military Generals accused of plotting assassination attempts against state leaders.


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