It’s confirmed. In addition to Rio de Janeiro, five other Brazilian cities will host soccer matches during the 2016 Olympic Games. The 58 games are a sure-fire draw for tourists and will be played in the following six cities and seven stadia: Belo Horizonte (Mineirão Stadium), Brasilia (Mane Garrincha Stadium), Manaus (Amazon Arena), Rio de Janeiro (Maracana and Olympic Stadium), Salvador (Arena Fonte Nova) and São Paulo (Arena Corinthians).
The official announcement was made on Monday, March 16, in Zurich, Switzerland, after a meeting between the Olympic Committee and the International Football Federation (FIFA). For the president of Embratur (Brazilian Tourism Board), Vicente Neto, the expansion of the Olympics to five Brazilian destinations strengthens the promotion of the range of tourist attractions and options for the country and reinforces Brazil’s ability to receive tourists in its five regions.
“It is rewarding for the Olympic Games, and also for the promotion of Brazil, to expand the range of destinations to be visited by tourists during this sporting event. All cities already chosen proved, during the World Cup, that they are extremely capable of welcoming a large number of visitors. In addition, they are culturally rich, with a huge range of typical Brazilian tourism products,” said Neto.
The expectation is that the success experienced during the World Cup is repeated. We also hope that more international visitors discover Brazil and the hospitality of the Brazilian people, strengthening Brazil’s position as a major tourist destination.
Soccer in the Olympics – A total of 16 teams will compete in the man’s and 12 in the woman’s championship. So far, Brazil is ranked as the host country in both categories, along with Argentina for the men’s tournament, and Colombia for females. The remaining places will be defined by continental qualifying tournaments by April 2016.
The men’s Olympic competition begins on August 4, with the final on August 20 at the Maracana Stadium. The teams will be divided into 4 brackets, with players no older than 23 years.
In the women’s tournament, the competition starts on August 3 and the winners will be known on 19 August at the Maracana Stadium. The 12 teams will be divided into three groups and there is no age restriction for the players.