Sports fans visiting Milan shouldn’t miss out on the chance to see Italy’s favorite game – soccer, AKA football, or “calcio” in Italy – in its grandest stadium, the San Siro. Milan’s San Siro is Italy’s largest stadium, and home to two football clubs, so during the season you stand a good chance of seeing football games in Milan on the weekend.
Italy’s soccer season runs from roughly September-May, and games are played primarily on the weekends. Milan has two teams in the top division – AC Milan and Inter Milan – and they both play at the same stadium. This means only one of those teams has a home game on any given weekend, of course, but if you aren’t a devoted fan of one or the other then it’s just a great chance to see Italian football.
The official name of Milan’s stadium is Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, but it’s most commonly called Stadio San Siro for the neighborhood in which it’s located. Tickets are difficult to buy in advance for games, especially overseas – you can find them available online, but the markups are usually astronomical.
To see a match during your trip without paying several times the ticket price to an online broker, consult the calendar of games to confirm there’s one going on, then plan to bring cash and your passport (or other picture ID with a birthdate) to the stadium a few hours before kick-off to buy tickets directly from the kiosks outside the stadium. You can generally get tickets in the middle or upper levels for less than €30, and of course there are more expensive options if you want better seats.
Be warned that the Italians don’t exactly “queue” very well, especially before a game, so there will be a fair amount of jostling at the ticket kiosks. It’s usually harmless, although it can be a little disconcerting. Tickets are printed with your name, which must match your picture ID or you can’t get into the stadium.
Sitting on the long sides of the stadium is the way to go, as the short ends are where the most rabid (and some would call crazy) fans sit. You can take in the spectacle without causing any problems, as long as you’re not wearing anything to indicate you’re a fan of the opposing team. Basic black is always a good bet!
The San Siro sits to the west of central Milan, and you can get there by public transportation. The #16 tram usually goes all the way to the stadium, but on game days it stops some distance away and the trip is completed by bus. Buses #49 and #78 have stops relatively close to the stadium (the #49 gets closer). The closest Metro stop is Lotto, which isn’t very close, but it’s not a terrible walk from there, either.