Top five German football stadiums

by Eche Egbuonu

The Bundesliga is one of Europe’s most entertaining leagues and one that locals fervently support. This is illustrated by the highest average attendance in Europe that was achieved throughout the 2010/2011 season. At 42,673 average fans per game the Bundesliga averaged over 7,000 more fans than the second-placed premier league. Some of Euro 2012’s most high profile players including Franck Ribery and Arjen Robben play in the Bundesliga. There are some great football stadiums in Germany that should be visited during your special city break in Germany.

Allianz Arena

This stadium has been the home ground of Bayern Munich and TSV 1860 since the start of the 2005/2006 season. The structural design of the ground embodies innovation and deviates from archetypical conventions.

The flat outer façade the stadium with an almost surreal aura that is both poetic and captivating. With its rhombus shaped transparent casings a variety of colours can be projected, which helps to set the mood for games. As for the interior of the stadium, the three terraces hold nearly 70,000 and possess fantastic acoustics that quickly transforms the ground to a cauldron during thrilling matches.

Eurostars Grand Central is an amazing hotel in the centre of Munich, the perfect location from which to discover the charm of the Allianz Arena along with the city’s other attractions.

Signal Iduna Park

The otherwise unexceptional industrial municipality of Dortmund is a fundamental pilgrimage for any football fan. It is impossible to have properly understood European football fan culture until you’ve set foot on the Südtribune, Europe’s biggest football terrace, at Signal Iduna Park (more commonly referred to as the Westfalenstadion).

The modernisation of Europe’s football grounds has seen large standing areas like Liverpool’s Kop replaced by seats, but the custom lives on in Germany due to fan power preserving the culture. There are not many better experiences for a football fan than cheering watching a game surrounded by 25,000 hollering fans. With cheap entrance prices and great beer on offer you can be sure for an exceptional night out watching the football. Visit Signal Iduna Park during your leading city break in Dortmund.

Olympiastadion

The Olympiastadion in Berlin was originally built in 1972 in order to host the Olympic Games. It later became the site of several major soccer events and also served as the backdrop for a number of stellar concert events. Aside from its use as an Olympic sports ground, the Olympiastadion has a strong footballing tradition, as it has been the ground of Hertha BSC since 1963.

It was also used for three matches in the 1974 FIFA World Cup. More recently, it hosted six games of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, including the final, and was revamped for the occasion. The Hecker’s Hotel in Berlin is close to the stadium and offers a private ambience and outstanding service during your football trip to Germany.

Veltins Arena

With its retracting roof and slide-out field, Schalke's pitch is one of the best in Europe, and so is the ambience inside the stadium. Schalke's fantastic fans are among the most zealous in Germany. Regardless of how badly the team plays they still turn out in droves, and they definitely know how to support their club. A Ruhr derby with VfL Bochum or Borussia Dortmund is not for the weak hearted.

The facilities in the stadium have consistently set new standards. Suspended from the middle of the stadium roof is a large video cube with a screen on each side, providing every spectator with an incredible sight of match highlights, goal flashes and other displays. Oddly enough, the Veltins Arena also features a chapel which has been used for many weddings and christenings. A Day out at the Veltins arena shoud be on itinerary of a German football stadium tour.

Borussia Park

This great stadium in Monchengladbach opened in 2004 and is the biggest Bundesliga stadium to not be used as a 2006 World Cup venue. The stadium is home to Borussia Monchengladbach, a club that has some of the most die-hard fans in Germany. It was because of the influence of fan-power that resulted in the stadium being built with standing areas that house at least 15,000 fans – an area of the stadium that is filled with hardcore hollering fans.

Borussia-Park has a maximum stadium capacity of 54067 spectators. It is one of the few ‘true’ football stadia in Germany as it does not have a running track and enables fans to be closer to the action. An ideal destination for a Leading weekend adventure in Monchengladbach.

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