2006 World Cup Stadiums

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2006 World Cup Stadiums

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2006 World Cup Stadiums – Germany60 years after the end of WWII, Germany is being invaded yet again. This time, however, it’s under decidedly friendlier circumstances as the globe’s biggest soccer nuts assemble for the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

Organizers have announced that approximately 2.6 million World Cup tickets are being sold, meaning that there’s plenty of room for you and your fellow hooligans. So dust off your Togo jersey and grab your face paint as we break down the top 10 World Cup stadiums in Germany.

Number 10

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Frankfurt
Frankfurt’s futuristic stadium, costing 126 million euros, is a welcome successor to Waldstadion, the historic arena that previously occupied the site. Home to Eintracht Frankfurt, the 43,324 seater features a translucent roof, a state-of-the-art 30-ton video cube, and over 12,000 tons of steel. Best of all, it still has that intoxicating new stadium smell.

What not to miss: Roll out the fish and chips as England takes on Paraguay on June 10, 2006. Brits around the world will be paying special attention to Wayne Rooney, the 20-year-old sensation who starred at the UEFA European Soccer Championship in Portugal.

Number 9

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Dortmund
The newly renovated Westfalenstadion was originally built 32 years ago for the 1974 FIFA World Cup. Thanks to over 40 million Euros, the refurbished arena now features over 67,000 seats as well as improved ventilation, a VIP section and even more food service points.

The stadium’s most distinctive feature, however, are its eight 203-foot-high yellow support pylons, rising majestically above the skyline.

What not to miss: History does an about face as Poland invades Germany for a match against the Fatherland on June 14, 2006. According to keeper Jerzy Dudek, "We want to make new history." Given the reams of Polish jokes in existence, it’s easy to understand why.

Number 8

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Hanover
After spending 64 million Euros on reconstruction, Hanover’s Niedersachsenstadion is finally ready for its close up. The 52-year-old soccer-only stadium boasts a seating capacity of 50,000, as well as a 2,500-ton roof supporting structure made from hi-tech, ultraviolet, permeable foil. Soccer fans can also look forward to seeing replays on two new 135-square-foot LED video walls.

What not to miss: Mexico will try to regain its past glory against Angola on June 16, 2006. El Tricolor has played well in recent years, cracking FIFA’s top five standings in 2005.

Number 7

Zentralstadion, Leipzig
Old meets new in Leipzig, where city officials built this sparkling new stadium within the steel and concrete walls of the original 50-year-old Zentralstadion.

Unlike its predecessor — which had a capacity of 100,000 — the new arena is decidedly more intimate with a seating capacity of only 45,000. Nonetheless, for what it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in improved sightlines and better amenities, like covered seats, outstanding acoustics and a modern roof with integrated floodlighting.

What not to miss: The Netherlands will show off their blonde ambition as they take on Serbia and Montenegro on June 11, 2006. Keep a close eye on the Netherlands’ Mark van Bommel. The star midfielder is rounding into shape after a recent ankle injury.

Number 6

Fritz-Walter-Stadion, Kaiserslautern
Located on a sandstone hillock in the heart of the city, Fritz-Walter-Stadion has been a mecca for soccer fans since 1920. The stadium, named in honor of the 1954 FIFA World Cup-winning captain, has a capacity of 39,820 and is home to the city’s beloved 1.FC Kaiserslautern.

In order to prepare for this year’s World Cup, Fritz-Walter underwent 48.3 million euros’ worth of renovations, including extensions to the west and south stands, reconstruction of the north stand, and the addition of a media and VIP tower. Otherwise, it’s been business as usual for this legendary soccer-only site.

What not to miss: Old and new worlds clash on June 17, 2006, as Italy — the perennial powerhouse — takes on America. After reaching the quarter finals in 2002, the U.S. team will be eager to prove it belongs on the international scene.

Number 5

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Cologne
Cologne’s new 46,000-seat, soccer-only stadium is an absolute gem. Completed in 2004 for a cool 119 million euros, the arena is a tightly constructed bandbox where the fans are seemingly always on top of the action. That intimacy is thanks in part to steeply banked tiers and a space of less than 26 feet separating the field from the stands. As impressive as that proximity might be, the stadium’s most eye-catching feature is its illuminated roof, which can be seen from miles away.

What not to miss: Get ready for a major grudge match as Sweden takes on England on June 20, 2006. David Beckham will be gunning for Mighty Britannia to get its first World Cup since 1966.

Number 4

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Hamburg
Inaugurated on September 2, 2000, Hamburg’s new stadium rose out of the ashes of the venerable old Volksparkstadion — an arena chock-full of history. It was there that East Germany beat West Germany 1-0 in an epic showdown in 1974. West Germany, of course, went on to win the World Cup, but the match is still discussed passionately to this day.

The new stadium has received a maximum five stars from UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) thanks to a 97-million euro investment that included remodeling the function rooms and VIP and media areas, as well as covering the spectator areas.

What not to miss: Get ready as Argentina collides with Côte d’Ivoire on June 10, 2006. The two-time world champs are considered favorites at this year’s World Cup, despite a less than stellar showing in 2002.

Number 3

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Munich
You’ll be amazed at what 280 million Euros can buy you these days. Munich’s dazzling new 66,000-seat stadium features a one-of-a-kind exterior that you need to see to believe. Designed by a Swiss firm, the building’s seven-story façade features 2,874 heat- and cold-resistant ethylene tetrafluoroethylene foil panels, which can be separately illuminated in white, blue or red. The light show they create is so mesmerizing that stadium officials are only allowed to change them every two minutes in order to prevent freeway accidents.

And just when you think they’ve thought of it all, if you’re in need of parking there’s plenty of that too, thanks to 10,000 underground spots.

Perhaps the only thing more impressive than the stadium itself is the support it has received since day one. In October 2002, Munich attracted the highest-ever turnout in a Bavarian referendum, as 65.8% of voters were in favor of building the stadium.

What not to miss: All eyes will be on Munich on June 9, 2006, when the city hosts Germany and Costa Rica in the World Cup’s opening match. Look for Germany and its young squad to rise and fall with the success of their team captain, Michael Ballack.

Number 2

Olympiastadion, Berlin
Those with a flair for history will definitely want to see the action at Berlin’s Olympiastadion. The legendary 72-year-old site has been home to rock stars and world-class athletes since hosting the Olympics in 1936.

Don’t look too hard for signs of aging, however, as the 74,000-seat stadium recently underwent a 242-million Euro facelift, which provided for both VIP and sky boxes, as well as business seats and new underground parking and training facilities.

What not to miss: Be on hand June 13, 2006, as Brazil takes on Croatia. The five-time World Cup champs promise to be as dominant as ever after recently embarrassing Chile by five goals in a tournament qualifier.

Number 1

FIFA World Cup Stadium, Gelsenkirchen
Opened in 2001, Gelsenkirchen’s glorious new stadium may very well be the finest facility on the continent. FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter has called it: "A pilot project for the whole world." UEFA gladly gave it a five-star rating, gushing: "This venue more than fulfils the necessary criteria, and might even qualify as a six-star stadium."

That praise is due in part to the arena’s removable playing surface, giant video cube and retractable roof. As impressive as the 48,426 seater may be, the financing is even more mind-blowing. Believe it or not, the 191-million euro stadium was built entirely with private funds.

What not to miss: Get ready for a red, white and blue love-fest as the U.S. squares off against the Czech Republic on June 12, 2006.

Are you ready for some football?

From June 9, 2006, until July 9, 2006, the world will be drawn to Germany as 32 of the planet’s best soccer teams compete for the prestigious Jules Rimet Cup. Over a billion fans will watch the action on TV and an additional 2.6 million will be there in person.

So the question remains: Where will you be when the final goal is scored?

Submitted by: AskMen.com – 2006 World Cup Stadiums in Germany

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