World Cup 2014

Arena Amazonia, Manaus

Capacity: 42,374

Opened: Scheduled for late 2013

Cost: Estimated 500-600 million reals ($230-$275m)

History: Located on the site of the former Estadio Vivaldo, which was constructed in 1970 and demolished in 2011 to make way for the new venue. Another one of the tournament stadiums that has experienced construction delays, in part thanks to the extreme weather in the rainforest climate. There remain concerns that the stadium will be delivered by its December 2013 deadline.

The stadium has also led to controversy over its use once the World Cup concludes. Its future occupant, Serie D’s Nacional, rarely draw a significant fan base, leading to worries over the future of the arena.

Its shape and colors are meant to represent the Amazonian region, with the colors of the seats reflecting regional fruits like papayas, mangos and pineapples and the structure resembling an indigenous basket.  

Fixtures:

  • England vs. Italy, June 14 (Group D)
  • Cameroon v. Croatia, June 18 (Group A)
  • US vs. Portugal, June 22 (Group G)
  • Honduras vs. Switzerland, June 25 (Group E)

The city and surrounding area: The capitol of the Brazil state of Amazonas, located at the confluence of the Negro and Solimões rivers amidst the world’s largest rainforest, the city is a popular ecotourism destination. The city has historically been known as the Heart of the Amazon and the City of the Forest and is steeped in history given its role in the rubber boom of the late 19th century. Its tropical monsoon climate has average highs in the high 80s with extremely high humidity.

US sister city: Charlotte, NC; Mesa, AZ; Salt Lake City, UT

Of note: US national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann expressed his desire not to have to play in the Amazon. “Everyone wants to avoid Manaus, there’s no doubt about it. It’s an unlucky decision to have a location like that in a World Cup.” Of course, the US will face Portugal at precisely that location in their second match of Group G on June 22.