Paris (South Korea) (AFP) – Playing football, nothing could be simpler, right? All you need is a ball, a few players and — a pitch.
Around the world and whatever the landscape, football grounds abound — and are as varied and diverse as the people who play on them.
Perched on top of a Japanese department store, lost on a dusty mountain trail in Nepal or nestled at the foot of an ancient aqueduct in Rome.
Where there is a love of football, there will always be a pitch.
In football-mad Brazil, pitches are crammed between crowded neighbourhoods in big cities like Sao Paolo or swallowed in Rio’s Tavares Bastos favela by buildings piled up like a house of unsteady cards.
In New York’s Brooklyn, footballers play by the waterside with the Statue of Liberty for backdrop. Seoul’s nightlife includes a pitch ablaze with light on a rooftop above a shopping centre.
In Switzerland players drink in the beauty of mountains and valleys with Lac Leman in the distance.
The Arctic circle boasts Henninsvaer FC’s ground, whose green synthetic turf is squeezed between Norway’s snow capped mountains and icy seas.
In Turin, a local pitch nestles atop a building among church spires and reddish-brown rooftops while in Rugeley, central England, teams play beneath the massive cooling towers of a huge coal-fired power station.