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Whilst only the most intrepid visitor may want to attend a Roma-Lazio game, a trip to the stadium is ideal for any football fanatic.
Rome has two first-class football clubs – AS Roma and SS Lazio – which share the Stadio Olimpico. Set in the Fascist-era Foro Italico, it was originally built for the 1960 Olympic Games before being rebuilt for the 1990 World Cup, and it’s definitely showing its age. When Roma and Lazio play each other tension is thick across the city: derbies are an excuse for romanisti and laziali to attempt to out-do each other with the wittiest banners, the rudest chants and the most impressive displays of team-colour pyrotechnics.
Whilst only the most intrepid visitor may want to attend a Roma-Lazio game, a trip to the stadium is an interesting addition to a trip to Rome for football fanatics: a spectacle of flares and chanting and a touch of atmospheric drama a million miles away from the elegant bella figura of the centro storico. For some of the atmosphere without the possibility of too much hooliganism, skip the derbies and choose another meet. As part of measures to curb stadium violence, tickets can no longer be purchased directly from the Stadio Olimpico box office. Get them online from www.listicket.it, or from registered ticket sellers through the team websites. All seats have a decent view but bear in mind the cheap seats in the Curva are favoured by the ‘Ultras’ and can be extremely rowdy. It’s not possible to visit the stadium outside games, but a stroll around the arena is still a worthwhile trip.