Estadio Azteca (Coloso de Santa Ursula)
|Clubs||CF América, CD Social y Cultural Cruz Azul|
|Other names||Estadio Guillermo Cañedo (1997–2007)|
|Construction||08/1962 – 1967|
|Renovations||1986, 1999, 2013|
|Record attendance||132,247 (Julio César Chávez – Greg Haugen, boxing, 20/02/1993)|
|Design||Pedro Ramírez Vázquez, Rafael Mijares Alzérrega|
|Address||Calzada de Tlalpan No. 3465, Col. Santa Ursula|
Estadio Azteca – stadium description
Construction on site in the suburban Santa Ursula area started in August 1962 with explosives preparing the rocky ground for future bowl (the pitch is 9,5m below ground level). Most of the structure was ready by May 1966, but some parts were delivered over a year later, example of those being completion of the roof. Since then visually the ground hasn’t been altered almost at all, so it still stands as Vázquez and Alzérrega designed it.
Initial capacity was at over 107,000 people, but over time has decreased very slightly to just around 105,000, reaching another low in 2013, when seat replacement brought capacity down to 101,000. Azteca boasts a huge number of private boxes for corporate clients – 856 in total, one of the largest premium zones at any venue globally. Records for various disciplines were set here, like American football (120,000) or boxing (132,247). The latter one still stands as an all-time high for Azteca.
National stadium of Mexico, despite shorter history than many other iconic stadiums, has an immense portfolio for large scale events. Two World Cups and their finals (1970, 1986) and other tournaments: Summer Olympics (1968), Panamerican Games (1975), FIFA Confederations Cup, Gold Cup, Copa Libertadores and hundreds of Mexican football games. Over the years a total of 6 clubs took tenancy of the ground with only the Club América remaining here permanently since 1966.
Apart from sporting events huge concerts were also hosted by Azteca, with the 5-night series by Michael Jackson in 1993 that brought a total of 550,000 people to the stadium. Other performers managed to fill it over the years, as did pope John Paul II in 1999.
Interestingly, the stadium is neither public property, nor is it operated by a sports association. The owner is Televisa media group, one that changed its official name in 1997 to honour its deceased president. However there was a second reason – Estadio Azteca was similar to TV Azteca, Televisa’s competition. So the name change was widely protested and the owner returned to the ‘proper’ naming after a decade.
Mexico: Estadio Azteca will undergo a renovation ahead of World Cup 2026
The iconic Estadio Azteca is set to close its doors in the coming months to undergo renovations in preparation for the 2026 World Cup, where it will serve as a venue for the third time in its history. Given this, there will be no activities at the stadium for an extended period.
Mexico: You can eat dinner at… Estadio Azteca
Estadio Azteca in Mexico City is offering a one-of-a-kind experience: a dinner right on the stadium's pitch. But it's not just about the meal; there's more to this package. All you need is the desire to participate and a few pesos to spare.
Mexico: Azteca's birthday in protests’ shadow - turmoil before World Cup
The legendary Mexican venue has turned 57 years old, and is set to become an important part of the World Cup, which would come to the Coloso de Santa Ursula for the third time in its history. However, the start of the renovations that were scheduled before this event are on hold and the future of Azteca is unknown.
Mexico: LaLiga's top teams will play at World Cup stadiums
Pre-season matches have their own right, and although usually the players play at that time "halfheartedly", such games are an opportunity for the clubs to visit exotic countries and, consequently, non-obvious stadiums. This time the Spanish players will visit North America.
NFL International Series: Germany will host two games of the 2023 season
The best American football league in the world has just announced that it will not return to Mexico City's Estadio Azteca next season. Germany will benefit from this, as it will host as many as two NFL games this year. The agreement in place until 2025 was that the country was to host one game per season, alternating between Munich and Frankfurt.
Mexico: Will artificial intelligence end stadium violence?
Stadiums in Mexico have become increasingly dangerous in recent times. However, the problem, which makes families with children afraid to come to matches, is about to be put to rest. Liga MX is set to introduce modern technology to improve safety.
World Cup 2026: Host cities announced!
For the first time a FIFA World Cup will be hosted by as many as three countries: USA, Mexico and Canada. In fact, the United States will be the main host and the other two countries will help to organise the event mainly symbolically. Either way, the 2026 football World Cup will be played at impressive venues!
Mexico: Renovation of Estadio Azteca will take two years
The modernisation of Mexico's national stadium is about to begin. The venue will be one of the arenas for the 2026 World Cup, so therefore it is necessary to undertake renovation works. The process is expected to start right after this year's World Cup in Qatar and take about two years.
Mexico: Estadio Azteca getting ready for 2026 World Cup
The legendary stadium will be the host for the World Cup games for the third time in its history. It is one of the three Mexican venues that have been designated to organise the tournament. The neighbourhood of Estadio Azteca is about to undergo a radical change.
Mexico: New Cruz Azul stadium in 2024?
The Mexican municipality of Tlalnepantla has announced changes to the spatial plan. They will allow for the implementation of the Punta Azul project, part of which is the construction of a stadium with 50,000 seats. The new venue may be hosted by Cruz Azul.
Mexico City: Cruz Azul not looking for new stadium?
Already before the pandemic reached Mexico, Cruz Azul have signed a 2-year extension of their stay at Estadio Azteca. But, what is more important, in almost two years no plot for a new stadium was found.
Mexico City: Azteca awaiting first major remodelling
The legendary stadium is about to host its third ever World Cup in 2026. Decision to redevelop it has already been confirmed by president of Grupo Televisa, Emilio Azcárraga.
Mexico City: Catastrophic field at Azteca
It wasn't supposed to end like this when Mexico's very first hybrid field was laid at the legendary Estadio Azteca in mid-July. The grass continues to die, leaving dirt patches around.
2026 World Cup: Canada, Mexico and (largely) USA win
As we await the joy and sadness of this year's World Cup, we've also learnt who will host the 2026 edition. For the first time in history three host countries will hold the event. Also, no new stadium (!) is listed for the event.
Mexico City: Farewell, Estadio Azul
That's literally it. No more event will be held at Estadio Azul, one of Latin America's football temples. What now? Relocation for Cruz Azul and demolition for the stadium itself.
Mexico City: Cruz Azul still not settled for stadium location
They have to leave their current stadium in just 4 months, then temporarily move to Estadio Azteca. But for how long? Will it be 3 or 10 years? For now there is no decision on where a new stadium might be built.
Mexico: Azteca damaged by earthquake, but only slightly
While it may have looked scary to see one of the stands almost split in half visually, that's just how the stadium deals with earth shaking beneath it.
Mexico: National team unable to fill Azteca
The Mexican national team will not play their last 2018 qualifying match at Estadio Azteca after poor attendance records in all previous fixtures. The game will be played at one of two most modern stadiums in Mexico instead.
Mexico City: Construction for Cruz Azul to begin in late 2017 or early 2018
If the director general of public Instituto del Deporte is to be believed, we're about to see major development on Mexico's latest sports city and the Cruz Azul football stadium at its heart. But are we?
Mexico City: Cruz Azul to relocate to Azteca
From 2018 onwards Cruz Azul will not play at Estadio Azul anymore. The club will return to Mexico’s biggest temple, Estadio Azteca.