The stadium construction started in 1925 in the district of Milan named San Siro. Originally called “Nuovo Stadio Calcistico San Siro” (San Siro New Football Stadium), it was eventually renamed “Stadio Giuseppe Meazza” in 1980, in honour of Giuseppe Meazza. The idea to build a stadium in the same district as the horse racing track, belongs to the man who then was the president of AC Milan, Piero Pirelli. The architects designed a private stadium only for football, without the athletics tracks which characterized the Italian stadia built with public funds. The inauguration was on September 19, 1926, when 35,000 spectators saw Internazionale defeating Milan 6-3. Originally, the ground was home and property of AC Milan. In 1947 Internazionale became tenants and the two have shared the ground ever since.
As well as being used by Milan and Inter, the Italian national side also plays occasional games there and it has also been used for the 2001, 1970 and 1965 UEFA Champions League finals. The stadium was also used for Internazionale’s UEFA Cup finals when played over home and away legs but has never featured since the competition changed to a single final structure in 1997–98.
The stadium underwent further renovations for the 1990 World Cup with $60 million being spent, bringing the stadium up to UEFA 5-star standard. As part of the renovations, the stadium became all seated, with an extra tier being added to three sides of the stadium. This entailed the building of 11 concrete towers around the outside of the stadium. Four of these concrete towers located at the corner to support a new roof which has distinctive protruding red girders.
Inter is in the process of new stadium feasibility studies.
- 1939 End stands enlarged and corners filled in. A crowd of 55,000 for Italy – England 2-2.
- 1940 65,000 for Italy vs. Germany.
- 1955 Completion of two tiers giving a claimed capacity of 100,000.
- 1956 April 25, in front of 100,000 spectators, Italy – Brazil 3-0 (Goals: Virgili 2, De Sordi).
- After the Heysel Stadium disaster, the capacity was reduced to 80,000 in the mid 1980s.
- 1987, as a preparations for the 1990 World Cup the Italian government gave the Milanese council $30 million for its modernization, but in the end, the cost was more than double that. Project 1990 by Ragazzi e Hoffner e Salvi: 11 concrete towers of 50 meters in height. Of the 11 towers, 4 at each corner, protruded above the 3rd tier as support for the new roof.
- 1990 Third tier completed on three sides giving an all seated capacity of 85,700.
- 2002 Sky Box: 20 for 200 seats. 400 all-seats for journalists.
- Future renovation may involve the completion of the 3rd tier on the east side of the stadium, although this would involve purchasing land from the present hippodrome, behind the stadium.
|Season||Milan average||Inter average||Milan trophies||Inter trophies|
|1988–89||73,209||58,175||European Cup||Serie A|
UEFA Champions League
UEFA Champions League
|2006–07||47,117||48,284||UEFA Champions League||Serie A|
* = Inter awarded Serie A title in wake of Italian match-fixing scandal.
Other than football matches, the San Siro has been host to many pop music concerts. Laura Pausini, U2, Bob Marley, Michael Jackson, Depeche Mode, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, Robbie Williams and The Rolling Stones have all played headlining concerts at the stadium. The San Siro was also the venue for the boxing match between Duilio Loi vs. Carlos Ortiz for the Junior Welterweight title in 1960. In July 2009, Madonna performed front a sold-out crowd of 60,000 fans as part of her Sticky & Sweet Tour. In November 2009, Italy played the All Blacks in rugby in front of a sold out crowd of 80,000, a record for Italian Rugby. The score finished at 20-6 in the All Blacks’ favour. Muse will play at the San Siro on 8th June 2010.