What are the most important sports arenas in the world?
Sporting and games have been a part of the human cultural fabric for thousands of years, and the arenas where these games have been staged rank as the greatest landmarks and marvels of engineering and architectural prowess from the most ancient of times. The Greeks had the stadium at Olympus, but the Romans had perhaps the most famous arena of all time in the Coliseum, where gladiatorial games were staged for centuries.
Today’s modern world is no different, and in virtually every major city around the globe the focus of civic pride is the local sporting arena where games and events are held that draw tens of thousands of spectators. Below are listed four of the world’s most important sporting arenas. The list is presented in no particular order so as not to offend the immense pride that people have for these magnificent edifices.
Madison Square Garden
Located in the heart of New York City, Madison Square Garden is perhaps the world’s most recognizable sporting arena. Opened in 1968, Madison Square Garden is the third busiest sporting facility in the world when quantified by ticket sales, and hosts games for professional basketball and hockey teams, as well as boxing matches, music concerts and political conventions and rallies.
Lord’s Cricket Ground, London
Lord’s is the world’s oldest operational sporting arena. While the grounds have been moved to three different locations over the years, organized cricket games have been played at Lord’s since 1814.
Maracana, Rio De Janeiro
The largest arena in Brazil, the Maracana was built in 1950 to host the FIFA World Cup. Originally built for only soccer, the arena is now being renovated into a multi-purpose sports complex in preparation for both the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic games.
Allianz Arena, Munich
Allianz Arena in Munich was built in 2005 to replace the city’s old Olympic stadium. The Allianz is the most innovative sporting facility in the world, with an exterior of micro-foil panels that can be backlit to change the exterior color of the entire structure. The home games of Munich’s two professional football teams are played there, and the arena will host the 2012 UEFA Championship League Final.