Top teams who share their stadiums with fierce rivals
Written by: Atrayo Bhattacharya
The concept of sharing a stadium between cross-city rivals is wildly entertained in Italy.
Winning in any sport is important and when it comes to Football, it is no different. But some wins are cherished more than the others, like victory in a derby against your nearest and most hated opponents.
Rivalries make football all the more interesting as it adds to the intensity and passion of the sport. Teams with fierce rivalry share it on and off the pitch while some rivals also share the pitch. Some of the biggest teams all over the world who are known for their fierce rivalry share similar stadiums.
It is pretty common in Italy in general but all over the world. Here is the list of top teams all across the world who share stadiums with another team.
AS Roma and SS Lazio- Stadio Olimpico
Italy is the breeding place for ground-sharing among rivals and two of the biggest Italian sides, AS Roma and SS Lazio, share the rights to play in Rome's Stadio Olimpico since its renovation back in 1953.
However, both the teams have collectively won five Scudetto but that does not affect the lightning atmosphere inside the stadium which can hold nearly 70,000 spectators. Lazio’s Curva Nord and Roma’s Curva Sud are witty and their tifo banter and pyros are a spectacle to savour for a football fan.
Stadio Olimpico is the main and largest sports facility of Rome
However, things can often go out of hand as the rivalry often takes a very violent shape amid all the firework flags and banner show. Just in all derbies here also the common fact of finishing above their rival is all that matters at the end of the day.
The humongous Stadio Olimpio also serves for the Italian National team and to add to it even the Italian rugby team is also using it since 2012.
Genoa and Sampdoria- Stadio Luigi Ferraris
One of the oldest stadiums in Italy, Stadio Luigi Ferraris was opened back in 1911 and is shared by two clubs Genoa and Sampdoria. It is known as the Derby della Lanterna (Lighthouse Derby) is named after the Torre della Lanterna, the oldest lighthouse which has protected the Italian port city of, Genova.
Both teams are a middleweight in the Italian Serie A in the current generation. Although Genoa is the club with the legacy of winning the Italian championships nine times but the latest of them came back in 1923-24, proving the recent success of both the teams.
Opened in 1911 and is one of the oldest stadiums still in use for football and other sports in Italy
However, Sampdoria in recent times have dominated this fixture, winning four Coppa Italia titles and their only Scudetto also came in this phase back in 1990/91 season.
Both teams currently sit in the midtable spots in the Italian Serie A as Sampdoria in an advanced 10th position with their city rivals, Genoa are currently in 13th position.
Esteghlal and Persepolis- Azadi Stadium
The Tehran Derby, probably one of the fiercest and brutal derbies in the world. Two of the most successful clubs in Iran battle it out against each other at the humongous Azadi Stadium which gets filled to the rafters and can hold up to 95,000 spectators. it is relatively young derby as the national league in Iran was formed only back in 1970. However, Esteghlal and Persepolis clashed swords for the first time back in 1968.
A packed Azadi stadium 7 hours before the game
The situations often get out of hand and in 2000 there was a spat in the match and the consequences led to a brawl after the game as 250 buses were destroyed and 60 arrests, including three players from each side.
Currently, Persepolis is leading the Iran Pro League with Esteghlal sitting in fourth position this season. Persepolis have been the more successful side winning eleven league titles and even the Asian Cup Winners Cup back in 1991. However, Esteghlal also are not very behind with eight league titles.
AC Milan and Internazionale- San Siro
The most common derby in the list as both the Milan clubs share a very stern rivalry through the years. However, amid all the rivalries and the violence among the fans both the club share the same Stadio Giuseppe Meazza commonly known as the San Siro. However, this is the most successful and fiercest rivalry in the list as both the Rossoneri and Nerrazzuri have achieved some tremendous feats in Europe and even in the Italian Serie A. Sharing 36 Serie A titles and 10 European cups and sharing the San Siro since 1947.
The legendary stadium in Milan
However, with the current dip in form, the Milan Derby has somewhat lost its charm and with both the teams entering a rebuilding phase and are nowhere near their former self.
Both the Milan clubs have also played in several other stadiums but post World War they have moved in with their neighbours to the historic San Siro. It has hosted four famous European Cup finals with the recent one being in 2016 where Real Madrid faced bitter rivals Atletico Madrid. It was also one of the venues for the 1990 World Cup and hosted six matches for the auspicious tournament.
Published: Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:28 PM IST