Modern stadium infrastructure is essential to the long-term health of European club football, a new report from UEFA says. And the 11th edition of UEFA’s European Club Footballing Landscape report, its annual club licensing benchmarking report on European club football, reveals that some 241 stadium projects have taken place across 43 European countries in the last 10 years Almost half of all stadium projects in the last 10 years have been new builds, while 45% of these had a capacity of 25,000 or more. There have also been almost 100 major stadium renovation projects in the last decade.
A wide range of stadium projects have been completed since 2010, from the 5,000-seat Acre Municipal Stadium in Israel to the giant Luzhniki Stadium in Russia (which has a capacity of 81,000) and Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.
Poland and Turkey have been at the forefront of European football stadium development in the period. The pair are the only two countries to have completed 20 or more stadium projects. Poland was more active in the first half of the decade, whereas the growth seen in stadium projects in Turkey kicked off around 2016. In terms of size, the stadium projects carried out in Russia have had the highest cumulative capacity at just over 700,000.
Some 19 countries completed stadium projects in 2018 and/or 2019. Seven countries have built new national stadiums, while four countries have undertaken projects as a result of hosting major football tournaments such as UEFA EUROs or the FIFA World Cup. 85% of all stadiums built in the last 10 years have a club or national association as their anchor tenant or were constructed for a major sporting event. At least 20 stadiums are due to be completed by the end of 2020, showing that stadium development is a constant and ongoing feature of Europe’s football landscape. Meanwhile, 80% of clubs reported a major investment in training facilities over the last five years. These investments exceeded €1m for one in three of these clubs.