FIFA announced that seven soccer venues will be used for the men’s and women’s 2016 Olympic soccer competition, spreading the venues out across six cities.
Belo Horizonte (Mineirão Stadium), Brasilia (Mané Garrincha Stadium), Manaus (Amazônia Arena), Rio de Janeiro (Maracanã Stadium and Olympic Stadium), Salvador (Fonte Nova Arena) and São Paulo (Corinthians Arena) will serve as the arenas for the 58 matches to be played between August 3 and 20, 2016. Sixteen men’s teams and 12 women’s teams will participate in the tournament.
“The Olympic Football Tournaments will be a fantastic opportunity to revive the great atmosphere seen during the 2014 FIFA World Cup, not only in Rio de Janeiro but also in the other five cities,” said Marco Polo Del Nero, chairman of the Organising Committee for the Olympic Football Tournaments. “They did an excellent job in 2014, and now they can use the World Cup stadiums and infrastructure already in place to unite the country for a major event once more. I am confident that the participating teams will have an unforgettable Olympic experience.”
Last month, FIFA said that it did not view Manaus as a suitable venue for the tournament. The Amazon rainforest city is located 1,800 miles from Rio de Janeiro and became infamous last summer for its excessive heat and dodgy field conditions.
FIFA is yet to announce a scheduling format for the 2016 Olympics, but London 2012 featured two days between group matches for teams, making for significant travel turnarounds. Japan coach Norio Sasaki famously admitted to playing South Africa to a scoreless draw in the final group match in the 2012 Olympics in order to obtain a quarterfinal match that required less travel.
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