Every real football fan heard about Bilbao Stadium at least once. As the ‘home site’ of Athletic Bilbao FC, the arena is widely popular throughout Spain, as well as Europe. Here we strive to make more people known about this sporting architectural miracle, so as a fan website of San Mames arena we will try to describe briefly and to the point.
San Mames Stadium – what can be said about?
First of all, this is the home stadium of Athletic Bilbao. It was built in 1913 and is considered one of the oldest stadiums in Spain. The locals affectionately call it “the Cathedral”, there are two explanations of such a byname: the first is nearby The church of San Mames is located and the second one tells that the building is named after this saint.
The football arena was opened in 1913 and, on the occasion of its 100th anniversary in 2013, a new one was built. In the first match that took place the host and Celta de Vigo were competing, where Athletic Bilbao made debut with a 3-2 victory.
The functional peculiarities of the place
The unique design, safety, comfort and good accessibility guarantee that the San Mames Stadium is able to host high-profile football events, such as the matches of the European Championship.
The architects and engineers of the Bilbao arena achieved a special acoustic effect with the thunder of the spectators rooting for, creating a unique sporting atmosphere.The dynamic lighting system of the place changes the appearance of the stadium depending on the time of day and the event taking place. It also changes the colors of the panels that make up the facade, achieving surprising and unforgettable color and shape combinations.
What famous sporting events of high importance were held here?
Throughout its long history, San Mames hosted many crucial occasions, for instance:
- FIFA World Cup;
In 1982 at Bilbao Stadium some group stage football matches.
- European Finals (UEFA Cup of 1976-77);
In 1977, San Mames accepted the second final of the UEFA Cup, in which the team met Juventus. The game was won by the home team, but the double value of the away goals gave the victory to the Italians, who had previously won 1-0 at home.
- Spanish Finals; (Copa del Rey (Cup of Spain) of 1921);
In 1921 at San Mames the final of the 1921 Spanish Championship (Copa del Rey) took place. At that time, the finals of the Copa del Rey were held in the same city, in this case the semi-finals and the final of the tournament were set, which Athletic won by beating Atletico Madrid.
After the construction of the new Bilbao stadium in 2013, the arena hosted plenty of rugby matches in addition to football matches. For example, the final of the European Rugby Challenge Cup 2018 was held here.
So is San Mames Stadium worth paying attention to?
Of course, it is. Moreover, if you are a football fan or modern architecture lover – this place must be underlined in your personal guide route.