There are those who visit a city for its artistic and monumental treasures and those who prefer the cafés and bars, the shopping streets or the dynamic social life of the historic centre. However, there is an increasing number of tourists who choose to visit a city because it has an important stadium, the theatre of memorable sporting events.
These are the many passionate football fans who make sure they know where the stadiums are and how to reach them.
In Emilia-Romagna, there are a number of the sports facilities that have helped write the history book of Italian football. Naturally, they do not have the fame and glory of buildings such as the Meazza Stadium in Milan, the Olympic Stadium in Rome or the San Paolo Stadium in Naples, yet they have had a significant impact on the events and history of this national sport.
Bologna is home to the famous Renato dall’Ara Stadium. Built in 1925, at the foot of the Sanctuary of San Luca, near the Certosa cemetery, it is the permanent and proud home of the capital’s, one of the most important teams in the Italian league for the last hundred years. Completely renovated for the 1990 World Cup, apart from football, it is also used for other events such as athletics, martial arts, gymnastics, as well as being the venue for numerous concerts by internationally renowned artists.
Moving now to Parma, where we find the Ennio Tardini Stadium, one of the oldest sports facilities still in operation in Italy. Linked primarily to Parma’s home team, this multipurpose facility was given a makeover in the early 1990s when the local team was first qualified for the top tier of the Italian league.
In Reggio Emilia, there is the Mapei Stadium - City of the Tricolour, formerly known as the Giglio Stadium. It is a rather recent building that was initially designed to be the home stadium for the local team, the Reggiana, but which has been subject to a number of ups and downs after the team went bankrupt. Today it is the official stadium of the Sassuolo Football Sports Union.
In Ferrara, we find the Paolo Mazza Stadium, the fifth oldest of its kind in Italy. Laid out in a typically English design, it has a very old history that goes back to the early years of Fascism. Today, it is the stronghold for fans of Spal (Ars et Labor Sports Club), Ferrara’s local football team.