The San Siro Stadium, like any self-respecting Milan attraction, is associated with many events in the cultural and sporting life of Italy. The history of the stadium is inextricably linked with the formation of the football club Milan in the late 19th century.
At that time, football began to gain popularity not only as a sports discipline, but also as an exciting sight. The leadership of the club becomes obvious that athletes need a new training base. The president of the football club, Piero Pirelli, needed several million lire to acquire land in the green area of Milan, near the hippodrome.
San Siro Construction
The architectural project was designed by the talented craftsmen Ulisse Staccini and Alberto Kujini. It took 13 months to realize it. Construction work began in 1925, and ended in the fall of 1926. The stadium borrowed its original name "Nuovo Stadio Calcistico San Siro", subsequently shortened to San Siro, from a small church located in the same area.
The primary type of structure repeated the classical architecture of stadiums common in Britain. A football field surrounded on four sides by stands in the form of an amphitheater. The initial capacity of the structure was 35 thousand people.
Since the stadium was built for the needs of the football team, Pirelli insisted that treadmills and other athletics be eliminated. Thus, a closer contact between spectators and athletes was ensured. The grand opening of the San Siro sports arena took place on September 19, 1926.
The first match, which took place at the stadium on the opening day, showed a hot duel between FC “Milan” and “Inter”. A friendly meeting turned into a rout for the home team with a score of 3: 6. A month later, on November 6, 1926, the first official match took place in San Siro, with the participation of “Milan” and “Sampierdarenza”, which also ended in the defeat of the hosts. The status of an international sports ground was brought to the stadium by a game between the national teams of Italy and the Czech Republic in February 1927.
For a decade, San Siro remained at the disposal of the Milan players. During this time, the club management changed and in 1935 the city municipality acquired the stadium in state ownership. In Italy, as throughout Europe, the love of football is gaining more and more strength. The stands need reconstruction and expansion, which the city authorities did not fail to take care of. From 1938 to 39, the stadium was redesigned based on 65 thousand spectators. The match between the Italian national teams and the fascist Germany of 1940 also took place on the San Siro field.
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San Siro becomes home to Milan and Inter football clubs
After the end of World War II, the Italians began to revive the peaceful life, along with her interest in football returned. The renewed San Siro was superior in size and quality to the FC Inter stadium Arena Napoleonica. In 1947, the municipality came up with a proposal to provide Inter athletes with the opportunity to train at the new stadium. Both teams supported this initiative, since then to the present day, San Siro is the home field of the football clubs Milan and Inter, which brought him the glory of La Scala football. It is natural that the increased load on the sports arena, demanded another update of the stadium. By 1955, a global reconstruction of sports buildings was carried out. According to a plan proposed by engineer Calzolari and architect Rocca, the stadium received a second tier and ring rows of seats, divided into sectors. In this configuration, San Siro is ready to receive 82 thousand visitors. A little later, on the inner perimeter of the football field mounted four lighting spotlights. And already in 1967, the auxiliary construction of the stadium was supplemented by a large electronic scoreboard.
Renaming San Siro to Giuseppe Meazza Stadium
In 1979, the city authorities decided to perpetuate the memory of the talented Italian football player Giuseppe Meazza, naming the main stadium of the city in his honor. During the course of his sports career, J. Meazza was the striker of Inter and Milan, and in 1934 and 38. successfully established himself as part of the Italian team. In their native Milan, the football player was simply idolized, so the new name of the stadium quickly took root. However, the true fans of FC “Milan” prefer the name San Siro, while the fans of “Inter” are inclined to “Giuseppe Meazza”.
Work on the modernization of the stadium was resumed in 1980, first of all, the lighting system was updated. After 6 years, the lower tier of the San Siro received four-color seats. A bright red color highlighted the sector of local fans, the orange served as a beacon for guests, the blue sector was the place for the hottest fans, and the green sector was located outside the north gate.
The opening of the 1990 World Cup
1990 was a landmark year for San Siro, for the World Cup, it took a large-capacity stadium, equipped with the latest.
In order not to start a new construction, the Italians decided to transform Giuseppe Meazza. Bold engineering and architectural development added the third tier of the audience stands to the stadium building. 85 thousand seats in 4 sectors were covered with a special transparent polycarbonate roof.
Eleven powerful columns were installed around the stadium, 7 of them supported a new tier, and the remaining 4 contained flights of stairs. Supports, decorated under huge springs, in addition to their main function adorn the building.
The cost of the reconstruction of the stadium amounted to 70 million euros. This figure does not take into account the additional costs of maintaining a microclimate for the natural coverage of the site.
At the disposal of athletes received a football field 105 by 68 meters.
According to the latest UEFA rules, the number of seats in the stands is about 80 thousand. Separately, lodges for VIP fans (5200 seats) and a zone with good visibility for 200 people reserved for the press are provided. The car park of the stadium holds 4000 cars.
Scheme and map of the football stadium San Siro Giuseppe Meazza in Milan download PDF
Stadium museum San siro
The busy life of two famous football clubs, closely intertwined with the history of the San Siro stadium itself, was very dear to Italians. That is why, under the stands of the south gate, the first Sports Museum was opened inside the stadium. It carefully stores over 3,000 exhibits, each of which represents an important event in the history of Italian and European football. Although, most of the exposure is directly related to Milan and Inter. Cups, medals, awards, flags and other memorabilia are unique, they can only be seen in the walls of the stadium.
In order to make a sightseeing tour of the football Mecca of Milan, it is enough to be at the entrance to the stadium number 14. Every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. guides conduct fascinating walks around the Giuseppe Meazza and its museum.
Football achievements and more
Over the years, the matches of the 2 World Championships (1934 and 90), the final games of the Champions Cup (1965 and 70), the final match of the 2001 Champions League were played on the San Siro field. However, the famous sports ground served not only football players; in September 1960, the boxers D.O.Loy and K.Ortis held a duel.
Famous musicians did not fail to check in at the stadium, in 1980 the Jamaican singer and musician Bob Marley gathered an unprecedented number of listeners - 90 thousand. Also, Giuseppe Meazza presented their concert programs Bruce Springsteen, Michael Jackson, U2, Madonna, Robbie Williams, Depeche Mode and The Rolling Stones and other show business stars.
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How to get there
The San Siro Stadium is located near the center of Milan, so the road to it by public transport will not cause difficulties:
- Underground red line MM1, stop area Lotto. Then take bus number 49 to Capecelatro, the final station.
- Bus: No. 49, departing from Tirana Square (Piazza Tirana) to Lotto Square (Piazzale Lotto), stop - Piazza Axum. Or number 78 from Govone (Govone) to the street. Lorenteggio (Via Lorenteggio), Via Tesio stop.
- Tram No. 16, coming from Piazza Duomo, next to San Siro.
- In the days of matches between FC Inter and Milan, special flights are organized to deliver fans from Lotto Square to the stadium.
If you travel around Italy by car, we sincerely recommend that you search for the best rental option on the auto.italy4.me service, you can get to the stadium in the following ways:
- Austostrada A1 (Autostrada del Sole): After the Melegnano barrier, turn onto the Ovest bypass towards Malpensa and turn off at the exit from Milan towards Via Novara. Follow the signs for San Siro.
- Highway A4 (Milano-Torino): Before the Milano Nord barrier, turn onto the Ovest bypass towards Linate and take the exit from Milan towards Via Novara. Follow the signs for San Siro.
- Highway A4 (Milano-Venezia): Before the Milano Nord barrier, continue in the direction of Milan and turn off at the exit from Milan in the direction of Milano Certosa. Follow the signs for San Siro.
- Highway A7 (Milano-Genova): Before the Milano Sud barrier, turn onto the Ovest bypass towards Malpensa and turn off at the exit from Milan towards Via Novara. Follow the signs for San Siro.
- Highway A8 (Milano-Laghi): Before the Milano Nord barrier, turn onto the Ovest bypass towards Linate and take the exit from Milan towards Via Novara. Follow the signs for San Siro.