Uruguayans have two main religions: discussion and soccer.
We can argueing about everything (especially about politics and soccer). So if you really want to catch our spirit, go to a bar, take a sit, have a cup of coffeee and begin to talk with anyone (even the waiter) about weather, economic situation, politics or last soccer match.
Futbol (soccer) is the most important sport; well, actually it is not a sport, it is a religion; Montevideo has a population of 1:500.000, and nearly 20 Premier League soccer teams (and there is a Second League, an Amateur League, an Universitary League, a Children's League...)
Montevideo has several stadiums; most important and famous is Estadio Centenario, where the First World Cup took place in 1930. While you are visiting Montevideo, spend a Saturday or Sunday afternoon at Estadio Centenario, and feel the passion!
Los uruguayos tenemos dos religiones principales: la discusión y el fútbol.
Podemos discutir acerca de cualquier cosa (especialmente política y fútbol). Entonces, si realmente quieres captar nuestro espíritu, ve a un bar, toma asiento, pide un café y empieza a conversar con cualquiera (incluso con el camarero) sobre el tiempo, la situación económica, política o el último partido de fútbol.
El fútbol es el deporte más importante; bien, en realidad no es un deporte, es una religión; Montevideo tiene una población de
1:500.000 habitantes, y tiene cerca de 20 equipos de primera división (y hay segunda división, amateurs, liga universtaria, liga infantil...)
Montevideo tiene varios estadios; el más importante y famoso es el Estadio Centenario, en donde tuvo lugar el Primer Campeonato Mundial en 1930. Mientras estás en Montevideo, pasa una tarde de sábado o de domingo en el Estadio Centenario... ¡y siente la pasión!
Football (soccer for American's) is a big pasion in Uruguay. The most popular team is Pe?arol and the second one is Nacional. These two teams compete with 12 others in the Uruguay League and they have 90% of the fans. Three or four times per year Pe?arol plays with Nacional, this game is called "clasico" and is the most interesting game of the year. If you happen to be in Uruguay when this match takes place you should go and see it. You will not only learn a little bit about football (if you are not into the sport) but you will also see how fans behave here and find out that football is felt in a different way if compred to european countries. It's a really great experience that you should not pass by.
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If you like horse races, you cannot miss the Hipodromo de Maroñas: after being rebuilt, this racetrack has opened its gates again, better than never.
There are horse races every Saturday, Sunday and holidays.
Si les gustan las carreras de caballos, no se pierdan el Hipódromo de Maroñas: luego de ser restaurado, este hipódromo reabrió sus puertas nuevamente, mejor que nunca.
Hay carreras los sábados, domingos y feriados.
Equipment: Binoculars and money.
Binoculares y dinero.
Soccer is by far the most important spectator sports in Uruguay. When you have the chance you should go and check out a game at the Centenario, which is a monument in the history of world soccer and where the first World Cup was held in 1930. Uruguay won the WorldCup and again in 1950 against Brazil. Ever since people in Uruguay think of these good old times with melancholic nostalgia. Nowadays, the Celeste, the national team of Uruguay, is still a very good, but far away from winning a WorldCup again.
The picture was taken from the World Cup qualifier Uruguay-Argentina on Oct 12, a game which Uruguay won 1:0, keeping their hopes for qualification alive
Surf can be practiced in Montevideo. It may not be the best place but if you like surf and come to Montevideo you can practice the sport.
Here's a link to a local surf shop. (it has an english version)
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Go to a Football Match
Football is definitely the number one sport in Uruguay, and the people care passionately about it. The two big teams in Montevideo are Nacional and Peñarol, both three-time World Club Champions. Peñarol play at Estadio Centenario, which was built in 1930 and has a capacity of just over 76,000. Nacional play at Estadio Parque Central, which has a capacity of just 20,000. The rivalry between these two clubs is said to be the oldest football rivalry outside the British Isles. If you are lucky enough to be in Montevideo when they play a local derby, go!
I went to Estadio Parque Central to see Nacional play a Copa Libertadores match v Coronel Bolognesi, which they won 1-0. I arrived more than an hour before kick-off and bought a 200 peso ticket at the stadium ticket office. For that, I got a bench seat at the side. the atmosphere was good, with plenty of noise and fireworks, although not quite as crazy as in Argentina.
Sorry, I didn't take any photos, but the link below is a video clip from the game I went to.
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Soccer in Uruguay. Fans, most popular team Uruguay
I went to Uruguay last summer and I got the chance to see a match between Nacional and Penarol. Nacional won. Nacional is the most succesful and popular team in Uruguay, Penarol is the second one. Nacional has its own stadium called Parque Central, 25.000 capacity, in which the first ever World Cup match game was played. Penarol has no stadium and is forced to play in the Montevideo Town property Estadio Centenario. When in Montevideo, ask people around if you can participate of the Uruguay derby, because it is an unforgettable experience.
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