Football is arguably the most fantastic sport in the world to many football fans around the globe. Getting its origins from the Chinese game of cuju and the episkyros of the Ancient Greek world, it has turned into a global spectacle loved by millions ever since the English established the game’s laws. No doubt that there is just something special about the beautiful game.
As a result of this, many dared and dreamed of working as professional football players. Some do this for fame and glory, while others seek to surpass their idols on television. However, there is no denying an everlasting factor in any footballer’s dream: a truly wonderful football stadium.
The stadium is one factor for many footballers and fans because this leads to fulfilling each one of their goals. Despite this, there are still some who don’t get how this is true. What could be so unique about the stadium of the team?
Why all the fuss about a Football Stadium?
You may think it’s simply an egotistical dream for any football player to play in a stadium with millions of people chanting your moniker. This is somewhat correct, but there is more than one side to these fans fanning their inner fire in them.
It has long been said that the athlete doesn’t “make” the sport, but the fans make it for everybody. This is the best and most straightforward way to place this because the fans take up the majority of the sports and their teams. But, aside from this, it is also because they are the voice of the group itself.
Whatever goals you have in mind, the people will let you know how and where you are to achieve your goals. After all, no footballer goes in without anything to prove in their passes and shots. Those fans will not be afraid to let you know how good or how bad each performance was.
Nevertheless, another side of the stadium is who the player is representing. The bigger the team is, the more life-changing the experience will be. If you think playing a video game or watching your favourite team is not far off, you are dead wrong. All the pressure of a penalty shootout or the adrenaline from a last-minute goal is pure euphoria, especially when you are the one in that situation.
What makes the best Football Stadiums?
The best football stadium is summed up with the experience that the player feels. However, this experience is divided into three factors. The first of which is the visual appeal of fans watching the game live. The second is the team that you are representing at that very moment.
The third is the most forgotten of them all is the history of the stadium. Most people think that this means the long list of legends and idols that have played before you by history. Nonetheless, personal history is also part of the connection you have to the team. It could be something as simple as watching them as a kid or the love you have received from the fans.
Fortunately for all, there are quite a few notable stadiums considered by many to be the best. All of these are still hosting football events.
The first stadium on this list is known to be the “home of football” to the English football team, and consequently, England fans. In fact, for many outside the country, football is synonymous with Wembley and many see it as the national stadium that hosts both European and international football games.
The enormous stadium boasts a 90,000 seating capacity, and this is also a multipurpose stadium. Other events such as rugby and boxing may happen here as well. The entire football stadium was reopened in 2007 on the site of the original stadium in 1923. Previously, their Twin Towers were near the stadium, but a beautiful arch over the stadium has since replaced it.
With the most prestigious events in the world and European football under its belt, the name indeed fits it and makes it the most iconic stadium in the UK. Aside from this sport, the stadium was also used for the 2012 Olympics that England hosted that year.
The Red Devils of Manchester United are known to be one of the most successful clubs in history, and a big part of this history is associated with Old Trafford. The new 75,811-seat area is a huge stadium that officially opened in February of 1910. However, it had only one covered seating stand on one side while the rest were open to rain and snow. Since then, renovators gave the seats better covering on all four sides.
The history is rich as well. This was also the venue for some part of the 1966 World Cup, which the hosts won. The 1996 European Championships and the UEFA Champions League also used the stadium for important matches. However, another consistent factor is the passionate home fans singing for their players. The fact that the sounds are loud and pierce the ears of the players and managers is no exaggeration.
As for the players, names such as David Beckham, Wayne Rooney, Paul Scholes, and Ryan Giggs are some of their names.
One of the oldest football stadiums globally is Anfield, home of Liverpool and their red supporters. After being rented out by Everton and being abandoned soon after, the structure began renovation in 1928. Since then, several renovations have been done repeatedly to improve the stadium’s facilities and capacity for their loyal supporters.
At present, the stadium seats 54,074, and it won’t be soon before another renovation happens. This is to increase the number of seats in the stadium again.
Many legends have “rocked the kop” in the field, such as Xabi Alonso, Steven Gerrard, Luis Suárez, and Mohamed Salah. However, older fans might remember names such as Steve Mcmanaman and John Barnes.
For the Madridistas, they would know this place as home.
The Santiago Bernabéu is the stadium of Real Madrid, and this can seat 81,044 supporters per game. The structure is rich with history as it hosted four UEFA Champions League Finals, a UEFA Euro Final in 1964, the FIFA World Cup Finals in 1982, and the El Clásico. In addition, many legends such as Cristiano Ronaldo, Sergio Ramos, and Zinedine Zidane have played in the stadium. Nevertheless, the most famous tale to fans is seen in the name of the stadium.
Santiago Bernabéu was one of the most influential people in the history of the club. As a player, he won nothing. However, inheriting the then dead club, he became the first manager and president for 35 years. All of this saved the club from being lost in history. It only fitted that their home is named after him.
There’s no better stadium to follow the Bernabéu than to mention the home of their fiercest rivals, F.C. Barcelona. This stadium is one of the biggest on this list, and the whole world, with a seating capacity of 99,354. Construction started in 1954 and finished the monumental project in 1957. Gone were the days when only backsides were seen at the top of the bleachers. Initially known as Estadi del F.C. Barcelona, it was renamed Camp Nou.
The Nou Camp has seen its share of history. However, the most crucial game the stadium hosts is the El Clásico between Barcelona and Madrid. However, much like Real Madrid, history can be seen in the immortals that have played in the stadium.
A legend called Diego Maradona played in the Nou Camp in the early eighties. More names such as Ronaldinho, Xavi, and Andrés Iniesta. All of which have proved to claim their place in football history. However, for the culers, none of them compares to Lionel Messi of Argentina.
The most famous stadium in Germany is not found in Berlin, but it is in Munich, the Allianz Arena. The 75,000-seater was made to replace the Olympiastadion, famous for Olympic events. The construction started in 2002, and it was finished and opened three years later.
The stadium hosted a few matches for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, most notably the opening match between Germany and Costa Rica. The same stadium hosted the Champions League Final in 2012 as well, between Chelsea and Bayern, the home team.
Some of the more famous players that have run in the stadium include Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery, Michael Ballack, and Philipp Lahm.
Signal Iduna Park
The Signal Iduna Park is another case of a team being followed by a rival. However, this rivalry between Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund is relatively new. Some people question this “rivalry” because there isn’t much to claim any rivalry. Nonetheless, this side of the Der Klassiker is the home of the last team.
In 1974, West Germany hosted the World Cup that year, and they needed to create stadiums for games. One of these was called the Westfalenstadion. It officially opened in April of 1974 and accommodated 54,000 with 37,000 standing. Nonetheless, it stayed the same until the nineties when they made some renovations. It is now the third-largest football stadium in the world.
Now, the 81,359 attendees have witnessed stars such as Robert Lewandowski, and they continue to admire others such as Marco Reus and Erling Haaland.
The supporters of AC Milan and Inter Milan hold a fierce rivalry in their version of the El Clásico. They call this the Derby della Madonnina, based on the rivalry between the bourgeoisie and the blue-collar workers. The first was associated with Internazionale and the latter with AC Milan. Another interesting fact about the teams is that they both call one stadium home, San Siro.
Like many other stadiums, it has undergone numerous renovations, and it has hosted European Championship, Champions League, and World Cup matches over the years. The stadium stands with 80,018 seats, and stars such as Andrea Pirlo, Paolo Maldini, Hernan Crespo, and Javier Zanetti have played in the stadium.
Just because it’s outside of Europe doesn’t mean a stadium isn’t the greatest to many other people. One good example of that is the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg. This stadium is known to be the largest in Africa, accommodating 94,736 people for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. However, this was reduced to 84,490 to accommodate VIPs for the tournament.
Nevertheless, this wasn’t known for reducing accommodations or its other purpose of hosting Rugby matches. This was the stadium that hosted two games that are recorded as legendary footballing moments.
The first was a game between the hosts and the Mexican national football team, and one Siphiwe Tshabalala scored a stunning goal in the top right corner. Unfortunately, this goal didn’t lead him to play for other teams outside his country, but he will forever hold a place in the hearts of many football fans. In addition, the moment proved that the only thing predictable about football is its unpredictability.
The second came in the last game of the tournament when Spain won their first FIFA World Cup, which made a name for many of their players. The moment immortalized players to be the greatest of their generations as well, and to some, the greatest team in history. This is proof that stadiums are a place that could prove a footballer’s worth.
The last of the world’s most famous stadiums list lies in the immortal image of the Maracanã, and this is another one in South America that has a painful memory for Brazilians. So the first thing that should come into mind is the unfortunate Maracanaço which translates into “The Blow of Maracanã”.
The incident was given the name because of the 1950 World Cup Finals between Brazil and Uruguay. To put it simply, Brazil were the favourites, meaning they were supposed to beat the other nation convincingly at home. Nevertheless, the Uruguayans were tired of these claims, and they urinated on newspapers as a sign they would prove the world wrong. They did indeed as the game ended 2-1 in favour of the visitors. This left 100,000 people in the stadium silent from shock and horror.
Two World Cup Finals and a few club matches could not erase this memory no matter how hard they tried. International football fans around the world will forever remember this as the night Brazil was heartbroken. While a painful memory, this is the perfect example of why stadiums are such a big deal to many. With its historical significance, it might be the greatest of all stadiums.
By looking at some of the best football stadiums worldwide, it’s no surprise that the football stadium offers something different compared to any video game or television. Along with this, players today dreamed of one day surpassing their idol’s records. It is quite the spectacle to be a part of, but for the player, this is a chance to prove to the world that they are worth cheering.
Nevertheless, none of the fame and the admiration of players is complete without the stadium. Whether someone is at home or watching it live on television, this is the game-changing part of the footballing world. The stadium offers to all a place to witness and fall in love with football.