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Sunday, 23 June, 2002, 20:19 GMT 21:19 UK
World Cup venue review
Jeonju World Cup Stadium
Jeonju: Voted the most beautiful World Cup stadium


With only two games left to play in South Korea, eight of the 10 brand new World Cup stadia are being put into cold storage for the time being.

Some will be back in use for the Asian Games and the World Student Games, and most will play a part in the K-League's burgeoning future.

But, despite each venue having hosted only three or four matches, all 10 brand new stadia have played their part in this World Cup.

Here, I take a sideways glance at the 10 stadia I visited, their host cities and the players best suited to shine there.

Stadium: Asiad Main
Capacity: 53,926

Supposed to symbolise: Sun rising from the rolling waves of the sea.
Looks more like: Golf ball with the top sliced off.
Finest moment: Amazing atmosphere generated by Korea's opening game against Poland.
Characteristics: Busan is Korea's main port city and the centre of its international trade operations. The beach area has a south of France feel, heightened by the emergence of an annual film festival in the town, regularly attended by tens of thousands of directors, movie stars and industry types from around the world. Also becoming one of Asia's most popular locations for movie makers.
Player best suited: Dario Silva (Uruguay) for his acting skills against France.

Stadium: Daegu World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 68,014

Supposed to symbolise: The gentle shape of a traditional thatched-roof cottage.
Looks more like: The face of a fly.
Finest moment: Ahn Jung-Hwan's equaliser for Korea v USA.
Characteristics: Daegu is the centre of Korea's textile industry and is becoming known as the Milan of Korea. Also striving to become major centre of tourism, though has been nicknamed 'greasy Daegu' by many unimpressed with the industrial side of the city. Stadium is the biggest in terms of capacity.
Player best suited: Fashion icon David Beckham (England) in a sari from Daegu.

Stadium: Daejon World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 40,407

Supposed to symbolise: A hi-tech stadium in the image of a spaceship.
Looks more like: Sardine tin.
Finest moment: Italy's shock golden goal exit.
Characteristics: Daejeon is the home of much of the country's government offices but is better known as a city of science. Daedeok Science Town and the Daejeon Expo symbolise the scientific theme, as does the stadium, which has a roof which opens and closes on demand.
Player best suited: Zinedine Zidane (when fit). Pure football chemistry.

Stadium: Gwangju World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 42,880

Supposed to symbolise: Roof a Y-shaped masts modelled on chariots used in Korean folk game go-ssaum nori.
Looks more like: A pair of shoulder pads.
Finest moment: Korea's shoot-out win over Spain.
Gwangju World Cup Stadium
Where Ahn Jung-Hwan lit up the tournament
Characteristics: A city of the arts, famed for its tradition in music, fine painting and literature. The gently sloping stadium roof runs virtually parallel with the imposing Mount Mudeungsan. Also known as the city of light, so the stadium's dramatic light system is symbolic.
Player best suited: Ahn Jung-Hwan (lit up Korea's tournament).

Stadium: Munhak Stadium
Capacity: 50,256.

Supposed to look like: The roof is designed on a traditional sail.
Looks more like: A baked Alaska.
Finest moment: Denmark's dumping of France/Korea's caning of Portugal.
Characteristics: A major port city and also the home of Korea's international airport. A hub of international trade and a gateway to the western side of Korea. The stadium sits on the ridgeline of Mount Munhaksan and the semi-circle arrangement of the stands allow all fans to get close to the action.
Player best suited: Portugal's Abel Xavier, whose haircut is also based on a traditional Korean sail, or possibly a baked Alaska.

Stadium: Jeonju World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 42,391

Supposed to symbolise: Four parts of the roof based on traditional bamboo folding fans, while stadium masts look like Korean totem poles, jangseung.
Looks more like: Two pairs of eyelids.
Finest moment: Pauletta's Portuguese hat-trick.
Characteristics: Jeonju is the place of origin of Yi Seong-gye, founder of the Joseon Dynasty. Joseon history and culture decorates the city - along with Diego Maradona! The Argentine World Cup star was recruited to promote the city as a World Cup venue. Voted the most beautiful World Cup stadium, architechts also claim that 40,000 could leave the stadium within five minutes - which came in handy for Mexico fans in their second round game with the USA.
Player best suited: Luis Figo (Portugal). Certainly boasts culture and history, though this year was more like one of the totem poles.

Stadium: Jeju World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 42,256

Supposed to symbolise: Baengnokdam, the lake in the volcano.
Looks more like: An ice cream scoop.
Finest moment: Brazil's Chinese master class.
Characteristics: Located on Jeju Island, Korea's southern tourist resort which is dominated by extinct volcano Mount Hallasan. The stadium design is based on Baengnokdam, the lake which sits at the top of the volcano. Standing between the volcano and the deep blue Pacific waters, Seogwipo is the most eye-catching stadium in Korea.
Player best suited: Thierry Henry (France). The simmering volcano who went off at the wrong time.

Stadium: Seoul World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 63,961

Supposed to look like: Traditional kite, or the image of a sailboat.
Looks more like: A glow-in-the-dark ashtray.
Finest moment: Senegal's opening-day win over France.
Characteristics: The city is the capital of Korea and the centre of the political, economic and cultural wheels. One of the biggest stadiums in Asia, Seoul World Cup Stadium sits astride the banks of the mighty Han River. The powerful lighting system in the stadium means night games can often feel as though they are being played in the middle of the afternoon.
Player best suited: Raul (Spain). Free-flowing and powerful, like the mighty Han.

Stadium: Suwon World Cup Stadium
Capacity: 43,188

Supposed to look like: Various elements of Hwaseong Fortress.
Looks more like: A hang glider.
Suwon World Cup Stadium
The scene of Ireland's exit
Finest moment: Nail-biting shoot-out between Spain and Ireland.
Characteristics: Suwon is the home to Hwaseong Fortress, constructed by King Jeongjo of the Joseon Dynasty in the late 18th century and now designated World Cultural Heritage by Unesco. Much of the stadium is modelled on the fortress - even the toilets are built in the shape of the beacon towers of Hwaseong.
Player best suited: Iker Casillas, brave and defiant keeper of the Spanish rearguard.

Stadium: Ulsan Munsu Football Stadium
Capacity: 43,550

Supposed to look like: The image of a crane, poised for flight.
Looks more like: An upside down earwig.
Finest moment: Rivaldo's late penalty winner against Turkey.
Characteristics: The industrial capital of Korea, producing cars, ships, electronics and chemicals. About 40% of the population made up of city workers in their 20s and 30s. Fifa has praised the Ulsan Munsu Stadium as a "treasure in the world of football" and the stadium symbolises the youth and vitality of the city. With no masts to support the roof, all spectators get an unobstructed view of the pitch.
Player best suited: Ronaldo. Another treasure in the world of football.

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