Brazil 2014 World Cup: Exploring the Stadiums for World Football's Biggest Event
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In 2014, a South American nation will host the World Cup for the first time since Argentina did so in 1978.
Brazil will host the World Cup for the first time since 1950, making it the fifth team to host the competition twice.
There will be some great venues for fans to watch what should be one of the most talent-laden and exciting World Cups in the history of the game.
Brazil has 12 stadiums in line for the competition, and there a few newly built venues as well as some undergoing renovations.
Let's take a look at the stadiums for the 2014 World Cup.
Arena De Sao Paulo: Sao Paulo
The Arena De Sao Paulo is one of the new stadiums that will be built in time for the World Cup, and it will host the opening match.
It will become the home stadium for the Corinthians football club.
The Arena will hold a total capacity of 65,807 (of which 20,000 seats are temporary).
Arena Fonte Nova: Salvador
The Arena Fonte Nova is another new stadium set to be built for the competition. It will be built on the the site of the former Estadio Octavio Mangabeira.
The stadium's predecessor was built in 1951 and was closed in 2007. Brazilian clubs Bahia and Vitoria were tenants of that stadium.
The arena will hold a maximum capacity of 56,500 spectators, and is set to host a number of group games as well as two knockout ties.
Arena Pernambuco: Recife
Recife will receive a brand new stadium in the form of the Arena Pernambuco. The stadium is set to be ready for use by June 2013, when Nautico will become the main tenant.
With a capacity of 43,921, the Pernambuco stadium will host five games in the 2014 World Cup.
Estadio Do Maracana: Rio De Janeiro
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The Maracana is an obvious selection for the competition. It was built for the 1950 World Cup and has seen many great events in Brazilian football. The Maracana is currently being rebuilt for the competition and will host seven games, including the final.
It is the country's biggest ground, with a capacity of 76,935.
Estadio Das Dunas: Natal
The Estadio Das Dunas is being built because Natal required a more modern venue to become a host city for the 2014 World Cup.
The city was host to two different stadiums that have been demolished to make room for this new entry. Das Dunas will host four games during the World Cup group stages and will have a capacity of 42,001.
Estadio Beira-Rio: Porto Alegre
The Estadio Beira-Rio was constructed in 1969 and is home to Internacional. The stadium is no stranger to important games, having hosted four Copa Libertadores finals.
It will host five games in the World Cup, and will have a revamped capacity of 50,287.
Estadio Castelao: Fortaleza
The Estadio Castelao was built in 1973 and will be renovated in time for the 2013 Confederations Cup.
Estadio Castelao is home to both Ceara and Fortaleza, the city's two biggest clubs, and will have an increased capacity of 64,165.
The stadium will host six games, including two of the knockout round games and one of Brazil's group games.
Arena Amazonia: Manaus
Formerly known as the Estadio Vivaldao, the Arena Amazonia will hold 43,710 spectators. It will also host some interesting innovations.
"This sustainable stadium project will provide an important legacy for the region and play its part in helping to preserve the diversity of the Amazonian rainforest. For example, rainwater will be collected for its subsequent use in toilets or to water the pitch, while the region’s abundant supply of sunshine will be harnessed to generate clean and renewable energy. Plant screens will also be created to keep energy costs down and, above all, to control temperatures inside the stadiums."
Arena Pantanal: Cuiaba
The Arena Pantanal is another stadium built especially for the 2014 World Cup. It will host four matches and has a capacity of 42,968.
This stadium was built with a creativity similar to that in the Arena Amazonia.
"This sustainable approach has been applied to every detail along the way, with the wood used in the construction coming from certified sources and the waste and rubbish produced being recycled – thus enabling them to be reused within the building project and its access routes. The site’s air and soil quality is also constantly monitored, all of which means the stadium’s nickname of ‘O Verdão’ (The Big Green) is particularly appropriate. "
Arena Da Baixada: Curitiba
Curitiba's Arena Da Baixada was built in 1914 and is the home ground of Atletico Paranaense. Like other stadiums on this list, this arena will undergo some renovations before the competition.
This stadium will host four matches during the competition and has a capacity of 40,400.
Estadio Mineirao: Belo Horizonte
The Estadio Mineirao is home to both Atletico Mineiro and Cruzeiro and was built in 1965. This stadium holds a capacity of 66,805, but will still see some refurbishing for the 2014 World Cup.
The Estadio Mineirao has hosted great talents such as Ronaldo and Tostao as a home stadium in the past, and it will host six matches, including one semifinal for the Cup.
Estadio Nacional: Brasilia
The Estadio Mane Garrincha is being replaced by this stadium. The Estadio Nacional will have a capacity of 71,412 and is expected to be completed at the end of 2012.
It will host seven games during the competition, including the third-place game, and the opening game of the 2013 Confederations Cup.