- Address: Azadi Stadium Boulevard, Tehran
- Country: Iran
- Capacity: 78,000
- Opened: 18 October 1971
- Main use: Football
- Tenants: Esteghlal (football), Persepolis (football)
Extra stadium info – Azadi Stadium
The construction of the venue, which opened as the Aryamehr Stadium, started in 1970. The stadium’s record attendance of 128,000 was set in 1998, when the national football team of Iran faced Australia for a FIFA World Cup qualifier. The national football team of Iran, nicknamed Team Melli, were crowned Asian football champions in 1968 for the first time in their history. The national football team of Myanmar was known as Burma when they finished second place in the 1968 edition of the Asian tournament. Iran won the Asian football championship three consecutive times between 1968 and 1976. Korea became runners-up in 1972 and Kuwait became runners-up in 1976.
The 1978 FIFA World Cup
On 3 June 1978, the national football team of Iran played their first-ever FIFA World Cup game. The Netherlands won the game 3-0 in front of 33,000 spectators in the Argentine city of Mendoza. The Netherlands reached the final of the 1978 FIFA World Cup. They lost the game against the Argentine Republic. The second world championship game of Iran ended in a 1-1 draw. They faced Scotland in that match. Iran won its third FIFA World Cup game against Peru.
Esteghlal and Persepolis
Esteghlal, the first-ever Iranian winner of the Asian football championship for clubs, and their arch-rivals Persepolis use the venue for home games. Persepolis played their first-ever final of the Asian championship for football clubs in 2018 for the first time in their history. The Kashima Antlers from Japan won the tournament in 2018. Persepolis drew an average home attendance of 39,000 during that domestic top-flight league season. Esteghlal and Persepolis became the first Iranian sports clubs with 1 million followers on their main social media page. Both clubs also became the first sports clubs from Tehran with a value of at least €10 million.
Ali Daei played numerous matches for Persepolis. He became the first Iranian football player to feature in the UEFA Champions League. At the time, Ali Daei played for the world famous German side FC Bayern München. He played professional football for clubs from Germany, Iran, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates before he ended his career as a professional football player in 2007. In 1998, Ali Daei played his first-ever FIFA World Cup match for Iran in the French city of Saint-Étienne.