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Emirates Stadium

City: London

Capacity: 60 361 people

Ashburton Grove, known for sponsorship reasons as the Emirates Stadium or simply The Emirates, is an association football stadium located in Islington, North London, England and the home of Arsenal. At a capacity of 60,361, the Emirates is the third-largest football stadium in England after Wembley and Old Trafford and fourth-largest in the United Kingdom. In 1997, Arsenal started exploring the possibility of relocating to a new stadium, having been denied planning permission by Islington Council to expand its then home ground of Highbury. After considering various options, the club settled on purchasing an industrial and waste disposal estate in Ashburton Grove and submitted their planning brief to the public in 2000. In spite of opposition to the move by local residents and club shareholders, Arsenal succeeded in winning the council's approval to which manager Arsène Wenger later described as being the "biggest decision in Arsenal's history" since the board opted to bring Herbert Chapman to the club in 1925. Estate relocation work began in August 2002 and commenced four months later. Financing for the stadium proved difficult, resulting in the club delaying work until February 2004. Emirates Airline was later announced as the main sponsor for the stadium in October 2004 and work reached completion in July 2006 at a cost of £390 million. The stadium has undergone a process of "Arsenalisation" beginning in August 2009, with the aim of restoring the club's heritage and history. The ground has frequently hosted music concerts and several international fixtures featuring the Brazil national football team.

Source: Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia