Our HistoryMadrid, Spain “Ultras Sur” Founded: 6 March 1902
Club Chant: Hala Madrid
EXPERIENCE THE BRAVEST, LOUDEST AND TOUGHEST CLUBS IN EUROPE
Not many teams go to the Santiago Bernabeu and get a result, even fewer believe they actually can. Since 1944 the steep inclines of the Bernabeu terraces have loomed down on the hallowed turf to the chants of Hala Madrid. And with it has come unprecedented success.
Not only has the ground welcomed some of the great players on the planet, but Madrid fans have been treated to 30 league titles, 10 Copa del Reys, and 10 Champions League titles.
The noise which rings out on a weekly basis creates one of the most intimidating atmospheres in Europe, and they’re not afraid to turn on their own players too with Gareth Bale on the end of a flurry of abuse during the 2014/15 season.
The El Clasico of course sees the decibel levels turn up a notch, and many a Barcelona side has fallen when Madrid have had the 12th man on their side.
From pigs’ heads to the magical Lionel Messi, Barcelona’s Nou Camp stadium really has seen it all. Of course it’s remembered as a special ground for many clubs, not least Manchester United who lifted the Champions League there in 1999.
But for teams going head-to-head with Barcelona, it’s an energy sapping stadium, with the fans on top of you, and the team passing it around you like they’re on the training field just down the road.
For Luis Figo however, it’s an arena which will no doubt bring up mixed emotions. Having spent five years with Barca and lifting a number of trophies, he returned to the Nou Camp as a Real Madrid player in one of the most memorable El Clasico’s of all time. Not for what happened on the pitch, but the infamous pig’s head which was flung at the corner flag, defining the intense rivalry between the clubs, and the huge passion of the Barcelona fans which strikes fear into even the most hardened player.
A lot has changed at Juventus over the past decade. A return to the top has been more than welcome for fans of the Old Lady and alongside that their new stadium, only four years old, has become more than a fortress.
Built on the site of the former Stadio delle Alpi, it has already become a stadium to fear with Juventus having won the league title every season since they moved in. Banners are constantly draped across the stands adding to an atmosphere the Juventus Ultras already make incredibly intimidating. And with the likes of Pogba and Morata on the ball it makes for a terrifying pitch to walk out onto.
However, the first team to walk into the Turin stadium had somewhat of a surprise result with Notts County - yes NOTTS COUNTY - picking up a 1-1 draw to officially open the ground. Not even Real Madrid could manage that, falling 2-1 to the Old Lady last season in the Champions League Semi-Final.
Players from all over the world watch on in awe as the Borussia Dortmund players are worshipped like heroes stepping out in front of over 80,000 adoring fans at the Westfalenstadion. A sea of yellow, an incredible sound reverberates around the stadium, creating without a doubt one of the greatest atmospheres in football.
Their success under Jurgen Klopp in recent years has only made it a harder stadium to visit with Thomas Tuchel taking over in 2015 and keeping its fortress status.
The Westfalenstadion is the largest stadium in the Bundesliga and its standing area is much the envy of Premier League clubs, with it said to have boosted the atmosphere significantly in the South Terrace, which has been handed the nickname, Yellow Wall.
For over 100 years the Red Army have been walking through the streets of Salford into one of the most famous football stadiums on the planet. Old Trafford is nicknamed the Theatre of Dreams, but for many an opposition dreams turn well and truly into nightmares.
Over the past 20 years United have won 28 trophies and have become a worldwide phenomenon with fans from all corners wanting to experience the atmosphere of the Stretford End as the likes of Beckham, Cantona, Ronaldo, and Giggs walk onto the hallowed turf.
Now entering a new era, the 75,000 seater stadium is seeing plenty of changes on the pitch but the sounds of Matt Busby’s Aces and Glory Glory Man United continues to ring out.
Whether you be watching Lazio or Roma, Stadio Olimpico is one of the loudest and proudest stadiums in Europe. Reminiscent of the Colosseum, just a short drive away, the players are treated like gladiators as they walk out, with the likes of Paul Gascoigne, Hernan Crespo, and Giuseppe Favalli all being worshipped by the Ultras.
Over the years, the fans have contributed to some unbelievably feisty affairs, often crossing the line between right and wrong, but all the while making the Stadio Olimpico an extremely intimidating environment.
The Curva Nord is the home of the Ultras and Lazio have even retired the number 12 jersey, dedicated to this headstrong group of diehard supporters. They have a huge rivalry with Roma, and have also formed rivalries with the likes of Atlanta, Livorno, and Juventus.
There’s nothing that quite beats a European night at Celtic Park; ask any professional that’s played there. You’ll Never Walk Alone bellows out as loud as the Anfield Kop and The Celtic Song even louder, as the cold weather of Glasgow and 60,000 cheering Scotsman really puts pressure on the opposition.
Their derbies with Rangers have become renowned as one of the greatest rivalries in football with the Old Firm – as it’s known – getting a little tasty both on and off the pitch.
Celtic Park is one of the oldest grounds in football and has been home to the Bhoys since 1892, although naturally it’s had plenty of renovations since, most recently in 1998, ensuring it still sits as one of Europe’s best over 100 years on.
A.C. Milan will only have a few more seasons in the San Siro with a new 48,000-capacity stadium being given the greenlight earlier in the year, and for the away fans who get penned in the top corner of the 80,000 seater, they will be more than a little pleased.
A frightening place to go to, many teams have succumbed to Milan on the outskirts of the city. During their time there – almost 90 years – they’ve become one of the most successful clubs in Europe, lifting 47 trophies during their time at the top.
The concrete pillars and deep red metalwork make the San Siro look really threatening, a feeling which is bound to change once they move into their eco-friendly stadium, filled with greenery, glass, and modern facilities.
Red Star Belgrade may not be the powerhouse they once were in Europe, but that hasn’t stopped the fans from chanting. The Serbian outfit are one of the most vicious on the planet with 55,000 preying fans deafening opponents week in week out.
The Eternal Derby between themselves and Partizan Belgrade is renowned in world football and regularly causes clashes. Flares line the stands, and riot police line the concourses, making it a derby like no other.
The side won the Champions League in 1991 and dominated the Yugoslav First League, later becoming one of the best sides in the Serbian SuperLiga producing the country’s best talents.
Visit the Turk Telekom Arena on a matchday and you’ll see in huge lettering the words, ‘Welcome to the Hell’. And it really couldn’t be more apt. Galatasaray have only recently moved into the Turk Telekom Arena but they’ve certainly brought the incredible atmosphere from the Ali Sami Yen Stadium with them.
Fans will congregate in the stands hours before kick-off chanting from end to end at eachother. Many clubs have snuck out of the back door of Istanbul airport to avoid the fans but come the match there is no hiding.
The UltrAsan are louder than any fans in the world, breaking 131 decibels against Fenerbahce, their bitter rivals. But they don’t get quieter for other clubs either, easily being one of the most intimidating crowds in football.