The largest soccer stadium in Europe is, undoubtedly, the famous Camp Nou in Barcelona. It is also the third-largest in the world, with the ability to accommodate nearly 100,000 visitors and fans. Why, in 2019, the attendance was 98,812 when Barcelona took on Arsenal. Here are a few reasons you may want to consider visiting this marvelous stadium.
The reason behind the stadium’s emergence onto the global soccer stage was the inadequacy of Camp de Les Corts, Barcelona’s previous stadium. It was realized in the 1950s that the stadium would not be able to expand. What is the solution to this problem? Building a new and better stadium, of course. Though, we would be lying if we said that Ladislao Kubala didn’t have anything to do with it – it was simply the fact that his fans wanted to see him play and there was not enough room. The name of this new stadium was supposed to be Estadi del FC Barcelona. However, everyone agreed that Camp Nou sounds better. Its construction started in 1954.
The first time it hosted the European Cup Winner’s Cup was in 1972 and merely a decade later, it started expanding into something even greater than before, due to it being considered and then set as the venue for the 1982 FIFA World Cup, when 121,401 attended the matches. You would probably want to know that the stadium, at one point, could be compared to the legendary Maracana in terms of its size and seating capacity, though it had to be reduced for safety concerns. The result is the five-star safety rating.
Apart from Soccer
While it is one of the greatest places for a soccer match, this is hardly the only purpose of Camp Nou. It also welcomed singers like Michael Jackson, Julio Iglesias, and Bruce Springsteen, and was even used by Pope John Paul II for a mass.
This does not mean that the venue is restricted to soccer, as far as sports are concerned. In fact, Camp Nou stunned the world when it hosted the Top 14 Final match of rugby in 2014, due to France’s venues being taken. The event worked so well, that the stadium was chosen again in 2019 for the first Super League game.
Just being the home of Barça is enough of a reason to want to visit this monument of soccer achievements. However, there are a few bits of trivia you might enjoy as well. For example, the stadium has an entire area dedicated solely to Messi.
Barça also won its first match at this very stadium. They were playing against Warsaw Select XI and won 4-2. You may also be surprised to learn the nickname for the fans of the club – Cules, or Asses, due to the outsiders trying to spectate being able to see nothing but the backsides of the fans. The stadium is also the place where the legendary Tiki-Taka style of soccer was perfected.