It is said that if football was a nation, it would be the largest nation in the world. With such a massive fan-base it is only natural that the biggest and most well capitalized clubs in the world will require equally massive arenas to house their armies of supporters, and to put on the kind of show that is demanded of them. Football stadiums are today the pre-eminent “Arena Experience” in the world, and we have made a list of the 5 biggest stadiums in the world as measured by seating capacity.
1. Rungrado May Day Stadium – 1,50,000 – Pyongtang, North Korea:
Also known as Kim-11 Sung Stadium, Rungrado is located in Pyongyang North Korea, and is billed as the biggest stadium in the world. It boasts a massive seat capacity of about 150,000 moreover this multi purpose facility was built in 1989 with it being largely used for sports and national events such as Military parades during National celebration.
The Rungrado stadium resembles a blossomed flower in design; constituting 16 arches arranged within a circle and in 1995 the stadium broke attendance record in recent history when 190,000 fans crammed into the arena to watch a professional wrestling match.
2. Salt Lake Stadium – 1,20,000 – Bidhannagar, Kolkata, India:
Salt Lake Stadium is situated in Salt Lake City, Kolkata India and is also known as ‘Yuva Bharati Krirangan’, with an impressive capacity of approximately 120,000 fans. Since its inception in 1984 the stadia plays as host to India’s National football team and is a multi-purpose facility hosting several athletics and football events every year. The three-tiered terrace facility also plays host as the home ground to four division 1 football teams.
3. Estadio Azteca – 1,14,463 – Mexico City, Mexico:
Azteca Stadium is the third largest stadium in the world, with a capacity of approximately 114,465 seats. The legendary Azteca Stadium located in Mexico City, is the designated home ground for Mexico premier league soccer team Club America.
Estadio Aztec is the preferred home turf for the Mexican national soccer team fixtures and this iconic stadium is not only famous for its capacity, but has also played host to two historic world cup finals, which football legends Pele (Brazil versus Italy in 1970) and Maradona (Argentina versus West Germany in 1986) played in.
4. Bukit Jalil National Stadium – 1,10,000 – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia:
Situated in the ultra-modern city of Kuala Lumpur, the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Malaysia was built to house the 1998 Commonwealth Games and has since gone on to become the home of the Malaysian football team.
European heavy weights Manchester United played at the stadium as part of their pre-season tour of Asia in front of a sizeable crowd of 40,000. Sir Alex Ferguson’s team went up against a Malaysia XI in the Bukit Jalil, the Red Devils eventually emerging 3-2 victors with Michael Owen scoring a late winner. The stadium is clearly a world class venue and, by hosting the likes of Manchester United and other major European teams, is increasing its global exposure and building on its already impeccable reputation.
5. Camp Nou – 98,772 – (Barcelona, Spain):
Opened in 1957 as a symbol of Catalan nationalism, Barcelona’s Camp Nou is one of the most striking football grounds in the world and emblematic of the unique Catalan culture and a regional identity.
Since the Camp Nou’s completion in the middle of the twentieth century, FC Barcelona, it’s illustrious tenants, have been at the forefront of European football and has enjoyed serial successes in this magnificent arena. Thirteen league titles, twelve Copa del Rey triumphs and three European Cups during the club’s residency at the Camp Nou have made Barcelona one of the most prestigious club’s in history and a true giant of world football.
FC Barcelona announced plans for the modernisation and further expansion of the Camp Nou in celebration of the stadium’s fiftieth anniversary. The stadium will have its capacity increased to over 112,000.