Things you did not know about the Sydney football stadium

Sydney - Allianz StadionSydney - Allianz Stadion 08.08.2017: The formerly largest football stadium in Sydney and all of Australia had its moment of fame in 2000, at the Summer Olympics. It was built in 1988 and currently has a capacity of 45,500 spectators. It provides venue mainly for rugby matches. The stadium, named Allianz Stadium since 2012, is well-known for having provided a playing venue of the Olympics as well as thanks to its wave-shaped roof.

As you can see, the Australian stadium is named after the company Allianz, which has the naming rights to several other well-known stadiums all over the world. Without a doubt, the best-known one is the Allianz Arena in Munich. Then there is the Allianz Riviera stadium in Nice, known for having provided a playing venue of the EURO 2016. Another example is the Allianz stadium in Vienna, a new home ground of Rapid Vienna opened last year. And we should not forget the Allianz Stadium in São Paulo in Brazil.

Use of the Allianz Stadium: But let us go back to Sydney now. The Allianz Stadium provides home ground to several teams: two of them play rugby (Sydney Roosters and NSW Waratahs) and one is a football club (Sydney FC). Sydney FC won the A-League Championship in 2006 and 2010, and in 2005 they won the OFC Champions League, a competition organized by the Oceania Football Confederation. From time to time the Australian national team, nicknamed “Socceroos”, play their matches at the Sydney stadium. It is interesting to note that the “Socceroos” played at four World Cups (1974, 2006, 2010, 2014). At the last World Cup, played in Brazil in 2014, Australia ranked, quite unflatteringly, last in Group B, without a single point scored.

 

Photo: Adam.J.W.C. (CC BY-SA 2.5)
 
 
Landmark: As we have already mentioned, the most distinctive feature of the stadium is its wave-shaped roof. It is transparent in certain places, thus allowing sunlight to reach the pitch and at the same time protecting the players and spectators from strong winds. Another positive aspect of this kind of roofing is that it reflects noise off the stands and back to the stadium, helping to maintain the right atmosphere at the stadium. However, it is a pity that the roof does not cover the entire stadium.



Photo: Frank Jasperneite
 

Records attendance in Sydney: A record number of spectators came to the Sydney stadium in October 1993 to watch a World Cup qualifying match between Australia and Argentina (1-1) – there were 43,967 spectators there then. Even though there has not been any comparatively big event since the 2000 Summer Olympics, Sydney has hosted a lot of interesting matches. It is worth noting that the closing ceremony of the 2000 Summer Olympics was attended by more than 110,000 people. After the Olympics, the capacity went down by 45,000 seats as the goal stands were removed.



Photo: Frank Jasperneite


A statue of a famous Australian player stands in front of the stadium:
One of the best-known and best-loved Australian players who scored goals at the Sydney stadium is John Norman Warren. During his lifetime he incessantly promoted football in Australia and coached international Australian football teams. After he retired, he started commentating football. Right before he died (2004) FIFA presented Warren with the FIFA Order of Merit for his services to football in Australia. That is one of the reasons why his statue can be found in front of the Allianz Stadium.
 

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