Football is the most popular sport in the world, so it’s no surprise the game is played in some of the biggest stadiums in the world. The largest 10 football stadiums, measured by capacity, are located all over the globe.
In fact, every continent other than Antarctica makes an appearance on the list. Asia has the most with six, while Europe has five. Even countries like the USA and Australia — where football or soccer hasn’t traditionally been popular but is growing in appeal — landed in the top ten.
OK, let’s see the 10 biggest stadiums on the planet starting from the least.
10. Borg El Arab Stadium, Alexandria, Egypt
Home team: Egyptian national team
The Borg El Arab Stadium boasts a 200 capacity hotel for visiting teams, as well as a giant running track around the pitch perimeter for athletic events in the summer.
9. Bukit Jalil National Stadium, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Home team: Malaysian national team
Initially built for the 1998 Commonwealth Games, the Bukit Jalil National Stadium has also hosted the AFC Asian Cup. If football’s not your thing, you can also catch Disney On Ice here when it’s in the area.
8. Gelora Bung Karno Stadium, Jakarta, Indonesia
Home team: Indonesian national team
Finished in 1962, the “GBK Stadium” — as it is sometimes known — was funded partly by a loan from the Soviet Union. Some of the world’s biggest clubs have played here as they toured the Asian continent.
7. Wembley Stadium, London, UK
Home team: English national team
The home of English football, Wembley was reconstructed between 2002-07, at an estimated cost of £757 million ($1.1 billion). Its arch can be seen for miles around West London, and when it’s not hosting football games it’s a world famous concert venue.
6. The Rose Bowl, Pasadena, USA
Home teams: Various qualifiers and exhibition matches
One of the USA’s most famous stadiums, the Rose Bowl is also the country’s biggest soccer stadium, playing home to the 1994 World Cup final and several qualifiers thereafter.
5. FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa
Home teams: South African national team and the Kaizer Chiefs
Also known as “Soccer City,” the FNB (First National Bank) Stadium opened in 1989 before being renovated for the 2010 World Cup. Viewers of that tournament may recall the sounds of vuvuzelas ringing through the air.
4. Azadi Stadium, Tehran, Iran
Home teams: Iranian national team, Esteghlal FC, and Persepolis FC
Opened in 1973, the Azadi Stadium was almost the main venue for the 1984 Olympic Games until political issues forced Iran to drop the bid. Apparently, the architecture is designed to heighten noise, which can be intimidating for visiting teams.
3. Estadio Azteca, Mexico City, Mexico
Home teams: Mexican national team, and Club América
The first stadium to host two football World Cup Finals, Estadio Azteca was the venue of Diego Maradona’s “Hand of God” goal in the competition’s 1986 Quarter Finals. The stadium’s name is a tribute to Mexico’s Aztec heritage.
2. Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain
Home team: FC Barcelona
The second richest club team in the world also plays in the second biggest football stadium in the world. The venue also hosts a number of Catalan teams. Fans were polled in 2000 and voted to make the title “Camp Nou” official, rather than a nickname. It was previously called the Estadi del FC Barcelona.
1. Rungrado May Day Stadium, Pyongyang, North Korea
Home team: North Korean national team
The biggest stadium of any non-racing sport by some margin, North Korea’s gigantic Rungrado May Day Stadium puts on massive shows celebrating the country and government when it’s not being used for soccer. More ominously, reports suggest the stadium was also used as the site of an execution of military Generals accused of plotting assassination attempts against state leaders.