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The Stadio de Maracana is an iconic football stadium located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The stadium is steeped in history, and was the site of the 1950 World Cup final where Uruguay beat Brazil 2-1 in front of a crowd of 199,854 fans.
The crowd capacity of the Stadio de Maracana has been significantly reduced since the 1950s, and the venue underwent renovations in preparation for the 2013 Confederations Cup. The venue will host seven matches, including the final of the 2014 Football World Cup, and will accommodate just under 79,000 fans for the event.
The Estadio de Maracana’s past is intertwined with World Cup football. The stadium was commissioned after Brazil won the rights to host the 1950 Football World Cup, with construction started in August of 1948.
The construction of the stadium was plagued by delays, and it was only completed to specifications in 1965 – fifteen years after hosting the World Cup final. As a result the 1950 World Cup final was hosted on what was effectively a building site, with the majority of spectators forced to stand for the duration of the match due to lack of seating.
Problems with construction have plagued the stadium throughout its history and in 1992 one of the stands collapsed leading to the death of three supporters. The stadium has been renovated twice since this incident, including the recent demolition of much of the original seating bowl and the stadium roof in preparation for the 2014 Football World Cup.