Football is huge in Germany and loved by millions of fans around the world. The largest sports stadium in the country is Signal Iduna Park stadium, which is also the seventh largest in Europe. As the most loved sport in Germany, football is governed by the German Football Association, which has organised more than 26,000 football clubs and has 6.6 million members according to estimations. Germany has several world-class football stadiums including Allianz Arena, Signal Iduna Park, Olympiastadion München and the Olympiastadion Berlin.
Signal Iduna Park
The Signal Iduna Park is Germany’s largest sports stadium and also known as the Westfalenstadion. In Europe, it is the seventh largest sports stadium and was built between 1971 and 1974 in Dortmund, North Rhine-Westphalia. Once completed in 1974, it was occupied by Borussia Dortmund, which is still based at the stadium. After completion, the stadium hosted three group stages as well as final group games during the FIFA World Cup. With a capacity of 81,360, Signal Iduna Park offers 65,829 seats and the most substantial terrace for standing fans has a capacity of 24,454. Signal Iduna Park has hosted national friendlies, European Club competitions games as well as European world tournament qualifying matches.
The Allianz Arena sports stadium is based in Munich, Bavaria, which is also the second largest stadium in Germany. It is the first world sports stadium to feature full-colour exterior changing and construction started in 2002. The Allianz Arena was completed by mid-2005 and is most recognised for its full ETFE panels. The stadium’s roof has built-in roller blinds, which can be drawn forward or backwards to offer prevention against dangerous sun rays. The seating capacity as the Allianz Arena is 75,000 and since 2005, FC Bayern Munich and TSV 1860 plays all their home games at the stadium. The arena has also hosted many games during the FIFA World Cup of 2006.
Germany’s third biggest stadium is the Olympiastadion Berlin offering a 74,475 capacity, it was initially built for the 1936 Summer Olympics. The primary architect was Werner March, and constructions started in 1934 and were completed by 1936. Renovations to the Olympiastadion Berlin took place in 1974 ahead of the FIFA World Cup as well as six further matches scheduled to take place at the Olympiastadion during the FIFA World Cup in 2006.
The Olympiastadion München was built in 1968 and construction was completed by 1972. It was constructed for the Summer Olympics taking place in Munich in 1972. The stadium capacity is 69,250, and many football matches take place at the stadium, including the 1974 World Cup Finals and Euro ’88 Finals. The stadium also hosted 1997, 1993 and 1979 European Cup Finals. Since 2005 several other events such as the snowboard and annual air events took place at the stadium as well as many concerts.
In Germany, football stadiums are primarily used for hosting football matches between the top clubs in the country as well as many international competitions. Several of the stadiums host music concerts, cultural events as well as films, while it is often used for athletics.