Italians eat, breathe and live soccer. There are radio and TV shows dedicated to it. There are even newspapers concerned solely with the subject. Not to mention, it’s the favorite topic for coffee talk at the local bar, where at the crack of dawn Italians engage in heated discussions about last night’s game.

Contrary to many sports in other countries, soccer season in Italy lasts a whopping 10 months each year. That’s a whole lot of calcio! Romans are especially passionate about soccer. In fact, Rome is host to not one, but two teams: A.S. Roma and S.S. Lazio.

Hometown rivals

The giallorossi share the Stadio Olimpico (the olympic stadium) with their arch rivals, the S.S. Lazio team. The Stadio Olimpico can hold up to 72,000 fans and is the second-largest stadium in Italy after Milan’s San Siro Stadium.

The hardcore Roma fans sit in the “Curva Sud,” whereas the die-hard Lazio fans sit in the “Curva Nord” whenever their team plays (during which things can get very rowdy). When both teams play each other at the Olimpico it’s called the “derby,” which is probably the most heated and anticipated game in Italy.

Where to buy tickets?

Tickets for both teams can be purchased from one of their official merchandising stores. Because of recent changes to safety laws at the stadium, each person must show their passport or ID when buying a ticket. Each ticket is printed individually with the purchaser’s name on it. Ticket prices vary, depending on the game, but usually run from €14-€100 each. (Interestingly, sometimes tickets for women are sold at a reduced rate.)

A.S. Roma merchandise stores:

Piazza Colonna, 360 (Prati/Vatican area)
Via Cola di Rienzo, 136/A (Centro Storico)

S.S. Lazio merchandise stores:

Via Guglielmo Calderini 66/C (Flaminio area)

Alternatively, tickets for S.S. Lazio can be purchased from any Lottomatica distributor, which are typically found in Tabacco (tabacchi) shops around Rome. Two locations are: Via M. Colonna, 37 (Prati/Vatican Area), and Via della Scrofa, 110 (Centro Storico).

How to get to the stadium: Stadio Olimpico

There are no metro stations close to the stadium, but it is rather easy to reach by tram. Tram 2 passes the stadium on the other side of the river and can be taken from metro stop Flaminio on line A, which is close to the Villa Borghese gardens and Piazza del Popolo. Take the tram in the direction of Mancini and get off at stop Mancini.

Alternatively, one can take bus 32 just north of Vatican City at metro stop Ottaviano. Take the bus in the direction of Tor di Quinto and get off at stop Stadio Tennis.

Bus 280 can furthermore be caught from the Castel Sant’Angelo or metro Lepanto. Take the bus in the direction of Mancini and get off at stop Stadio Tennis.