10 iconic football stadiums then and now

Football, the beautiful game as we know it, has been around for as long as we can remember. The game has been played professionally since the late 20th century and several clubs have been around for a while.And those long standing clubs have built stadiums that have turned into historical venues of modern day and are regarded as their fortresses. Some of the monumental moments have gone down in these venues while unfortunate incidents have also occurred.With these stadiums standing tall even after all these passing decades, we take a look at some of the most prestigious stadiums then and now.

#1 Old Trafford

Situated in the greater Manchester in England, Old Trafford his home to one of the biggest supported clubs in the world, Manchester United. It is the second largest stadium in the United Kingdom only behind the new Wembley and the ninth largest in Europe.

Since 1910, the Theatre of Dreams has been United’s home ground but they had to share their local rivals, City’s Maine Road stadium from 1941 to 1949 as a result of bomb damage. It has undergone several renovations during the 1990’s and 2000’s and currently has a seat capacity of 75,635.

#2 Camp Nou

Camp Nou is the home ground of La Liga giants FC Barcelona which is based in Cataluyna, Spain. It was established in 1957 and has a crowd capacity of 99,354 making it the largest stadium in Europe.

After three years of construction, the inaugural match was played on September 24, 1957, between Barcelona and Legia Warsaw which the home side won 4-2. Till date, Camp Nou has hosted two UEFA Champions League finals.

#3 Santiago Bernabeu

Named after their honorable chairman Santiago Bernabeu Yeste, the stadium of the capital club, Real Madrid is one of the most prestigious football stadiums in Europe. Initially with a maximum capacity of 81,044 spectators, it is the second largest stadium in Spain and has hosted the 1982 FIFA World Cup.

The Bernabeu has held the UEFA Champions League final on four occasions. In 2013, the redevelopment project which would increase the capacity from 81,000 to about 88,500 was estimated to cost about €300 million.

#4 San Siro

San Siro or the Giuseppe Meazza Stadium is the joint home to 7-time Champions League winners AC Milan and Internazionale. The stadium is named after legendary Italian player and two-time World Cup winner Giuseppe Meazza who played for Inter Milan.

It held UEFA five-star stadium status which was superseded by a new system of classification. The stadium’s inaugural match was played in 1926 and after going several renovations during the years, it has a maximum capacity of 80,018.

#5 Stamford Bridge

Located in North-west London, Stamford Bridge is the home stadium of Premier League outfit Chelsea FC. Founded in 1877, the ground was initially used London Athletic club until 1905, after the Chelsea football club was founded by owner Gus Mears.

Since then, the Blues have played all of their home games at the Bridge. It has undergone numerous major changes over the years, most recently in the 1990s when it was renovated into a modern, all-seater stadium. With a total seating capacity of 41,798, it is the eight largest ground in the Premier League.

#6 Anfield Arena

Anfield Arena was actually the home ground for Eveton since its foundation in 1884 to 1891. After Liverpool FC was formed in 1892, it has been used by the Reds while their neighbours moved to Goodison Park.

With a seat capacity of 45,276, the ground is one of the most historical venues in Europe and is divided into four stands, Main Stand, Centenary Stand, Spion Kop and Anfield Road.

#7 Maracana

Rio De Janerio’s Maracana has its place in World Cup history mainly due to the infamous Maracanazo tragedy in 1950 where Brazil lost 2-1 to Uruguay in the final. The game also saw the highest ever attendance recorded in a world cup match (199,854).

The stadium underwent renovation recently before the 2014 World Cup and now has a total seating capacity of 78,838. It the largest stadium in Brazil and is mainly used for football matches between Flamengo, Fluminese, Botafogo and Vasco da Gama.

#8 St. James\' Park

St James' Park has been the home ground of Newcastle United since 1892 and has been used for football since 1880. Throughout its history, the desire for expansion has caused conflict with local residents and the local council.

Situated in Tyne, England it currently has a seating capacity of 52,405.

#9 Celtic Park

Home to Celtic football club, Celtic Park is located in the Parkhead area of Glasgow which is the largest stadium in Scotland and has a capacity of 60,355.

Celtic was formed in November 1887 and first laid out a ground in the Parkhead area in 1888. The club moved to a different site in 1892, however, when the rental charge was greatly increased.

#10 Hillsborough

Sheffield Wednesday FC’s home stadium Hillsborough was established in 1899 since the club was founded. It is a 39,732 capacity all-seater stadium that is perhaps infamous for the tragic Hillsborough incident in the 1989 FA Cup which resulted in the death of 96 Liverpool supporters.

t is still regarded as "a beautiful ground oozing character" despite of little investments that have been made since 1996

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Edited by Staff Editor
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