Manchester is situated in the north-west of England, fringed by the Cheshire Plain to the south and the Pennines to the north and east. Although the recorded history of the city began with the civilian vicus associated with the Roman fort of Mamucium, which was established around AD 79, it began expanding at an astonishing rate around the turn of the 19th century as part of a process of unplanned urbanisation brought on by a boom in textile manufacture during the Industrial Revolution., becoming the United Kingdom’s first industrialised city.
Manchester was the site of the world's first railway station, where scientists first split the atom and developed the first programmable computer. Thanks to bands such as Oasis, New Order and the Happy Mondays, it is known for its music scene as well as its footballing connections. Manchester was the host of the 2002 Commonwealth Games, and its sports clubs include two Premier League football teams; Manchester City and Manchester United. Manchester is the third-most visited city in the United Kingdom by foreign visitors and the most visited in England outside London.
Old Trafford is the home of Premier League club Manchester United. With a capacity of 76,212 spectators, it has the second-largest capacity of any English football stadium after Wembley Stadium, the third-largest of any stadium in the United Kingdom, and the 11th largest in Europe.
The ground, given the nickname the Theatre of Dreams by Sir Bobby Charlton, has been United's permanent residence since 1910, with the exception of an eight-year absence from 1941 to 1949, following the bombing of the stadium during the Second World War. During this period, the club shared Maine Road with local rivals, Manchester City.
The stadium's current record attendance was recorded in 1939, when 76,962 spectators watched the FA Cup semi-final between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Grimsby Town.
The ground has frequently hosted FA Cup semi-final matches as a neutral venue and several England international fixtures while the new Wembley Stadium was under construction. It also hosted matches at the 1966 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 1996, as well as the 2003 UEFA Champions League Final.