Atatürk Olimpiyat Stadyumu

Orientation & Geography

Europe, Turkey, Istanbul

Atatürk Olympic Stadium (Turkish: Atatürk Olimpiyat Stadı) located in İkitelli, a district in the western outskirts of Istanbul, is the largest-capacity stadium of Turkey. The stadium takes its name from Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. Its construction began in 1999 and was completed in 2002. It was built for Turkey's failed 2008 Olympic Games bid and cost about €350 million. The 2008 games were awarded to Beijing. With its 76,092 (all-seater) capacity and Olympic size, it was granted the "5-star sports complex" title by the UEFA in 2004, enabling it to host the finals of UEFA events. The 2005 UEFA Champions League Final between A.C. Milan and Liverpool F.C. was played on May 25, 2005, at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium. The stadium is also certified by the IAAF and IOC as a first-class venue for track and field, and has hosted several European athletic competitions. Galatasaray SK played its home games at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium during the 2003–2004 football season, due to the renovation of their own venue, the Ali Sami Yen Stadium, and this was criticized by other teams. Galatasaray eventually returned back to Ali Sami Yen for the 2004–2005 season, but played some of its 2006–2007 UEFA Champions League games at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium. Sivasspor also played some of its Süper Lig home games at the Atatürk Olympic Stadium due to the bad weather conditions in their original hometown stadium. Istanbul BB, also of the Süper Lig, play all their home games in the venue.