Estadio Azteca / Photo by Televisa Sports
By Julián Ardila
On the sidewalk of one of the most popular sectors in the center of Mexico City – the market of La Lagunilla, open every Sunday without exception -, I found a small magazine on whose cover that fucked up over the years, illustrated Pique, the mascot of the World Cup Mexico 86, a green chile with a big charro hat, cheerful mustache and a soccer ball on his right foot.
When I opened the magazine, I found that it was full of great stories that had happened at the legendary Estadio Azteca and as I was flipping through its pages, I began to remember the most memorable moments that have happened on their court.
I remembered when in 1970, Mexico celebrated its first World Cup and Brazil was the great protagonist when conquering the field and becoming the favorite of that edition. Overcoming all his competitors to take the title of world champion and consecrate one of his players, “The King” Pele, as the best player in the history of the world.
1970 World Cup
And then, 16 years later, Mexico would host the 1986 World Cup, becoming one of the first countries to host two World Cups in less than 20 years. In this edition, the Argentine National Team was the protagonist along with one of the greatest players of all history, Diego Armando Maradona, who was crowned as champion with a legendary match against Germany. And his incredible participation in front of England with his great annotation baptized as “the hand of God”.
Or the match where Mexico faced Bulgaria, and Manuel Negrete made an unforgettable scissor movement, and it became the most beautiful goal of the 86 World Cup.
Great moments in the history of football have been told at the Estadio Azteca, making it a place of world worship and the most precious relic of Mexican football.
1986 World Cup
But the Estadio Azteca is also a classic of architecture, it was designed in 1962 by the Mexican architects Pedro Ramírez Vázquez (also the author of the National Museum of Anthropology and the Museum of Modern Art) and Rafel Mijares Alcérreca, who in their planning, took care that visibility was optimal from all points of the stadium.
On his court are still living great moments with the Mexican National Team and the home team, Club America. Live the energy of the Mexican fans is one of the most exciting sports experiences, it is to be surrounded by 87,000 spectators waiting for the team’s score, they get nervous, they get excited, they scream. They become the biggest chorus in the world when singing Cielito Lindo that reinforces in every corner and gives encouragement to their team. And when there is an annotation, they celebrate in a single shout: Goooool! And the stadium lights up.
Photo by Soccer Mania Mx
To be here is to be surrounded by culture, passion, and love for football. Whether you’re a fan or not, it’s one of the things you should do when you visit Mexico City. You can go to a game of the season or meet him on one of the guided tours offered to visit the dressing rooms, the press room, the court, the marathon tunnel and the commemorative plaques.
If you want to know the Azteca Stadium, contact our concierge and help you plan a visit.