The greatest sporting occasions unite nations (whilst often pitting them against each other) and engender fierce loyalties in teams and individuals. It doesn’t matter if it’s basketball’s fabled New York Knicks, England’s globally known soccer team Manchester United, Australia’s incredible national cricket team or sublimely talented individuals such as Roger Federer, or the incomparable Tiger Woods, they all need the right venue to strut their stuff on a world stage. Here are some of the best sports venues around the world.
In Spain, the rivalry between Barcelona, who play their soccer at the enormous Nou Camp stadium, and Real Madrid is legendary. The Nou Camp is a bear pit of competing fans, with visiting fans frequently drowned out by the home team’s supporters, and watching a game of soccer there is both a thrill and a privilege.
Madison Square Garden
Known the world over as one of the greatest sporting venues ever, Madison Square Garden plays host to major teams from basketball and ice hockey, and is also an iconic rock venue as many great sports venues are. Interest in the New York Knicks and other basketball teams and their iconic players makes many fans want the opportunity to have their own sports court at home, with www.versacourt.com being the first place many visit.
This famous stadium in Pasadena, California, is home to UCLA’s football team and has twice hosted events during the Olympic Games – 1932 and 1984. Though best known for hosting college football games, it has also been the venue for the soccer World Cup Final in 1994 and the Women’s World Cup Final in 1999.
The Australian city of Brisbane in Queensland is the setting for this huge stadium that has a ground capacity of 42,000. It’s a multi-purpose stadium and one of five Australian venues to host one of the Ashes series of Test Matches played when the England cricket team visits; one of the oldest rivalries in sport. The Gabba is also the venue for Australian Rules Football, soccer, rugby league and rugby union, and has hosted greyhound racing and athletics.
Constructed for the Olympic Games in Beijing, China, in 2008, the Bird’s Nest is a futuristic stadium that drew world attention for the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics as well as being host for athletics events during the games. The imaginative design gives the viewer the impression of a bird’s nest and it is now used for a range of sporting and entertainment events. The 2015 World Athletics Championships are due to be held there.
Rising a majestic 133 meters into the sky the gigantic steel arch of Wembley Stadium in London, England, can be seen for miles across the city. It’s the home of the England soccer team and hosts the most important domestic cup soccer matches. Major concerts are another feature of Wembley’s entertainment mix and the stadium can accommodate up to 90,000 spectators.