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LondonBristolian

Watching club football elsewhere in Europe - recommendations?

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Quick question. I need to book a holiday at some point and occasionally toy with the idea of going to watch domestic football elsewhere in Europe. Obviously Germany springs to mind but I'm open to going anywhere. My questions is what stadiums would anyone who has done this recommend in terms of either the atmosphere, the uniqueness of the stadium or anything else?

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Watched Roma-Inter in 2017- Roma at home a decent experience.

Get high up, in the block closest to the "Curva"- I did look for "Curva" tickets ahead of my trip there but seems to be season tickets only in that. Curva Sud so the nearest area behind the goal is Distinti Sud and there's a stadium plan online, nice and high up, close to that area you can really feel it.

Excellent atmosphere, obviously unlike here anywhere in Europe I reckon you can drink in view of the pitch, just a different environment to modern UK football. When I was there, struck me as somewhere between old school and modern UK football. Felt more raw than AG in the 2010s IMO.

Edited by Mr Popodopolous

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Union Berlin!

In the Bundesliga finally and a wonderful atmosphere. Properly old school.

 

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Mates went to Hamburg last year and I think we're all going back in the autumn to watch St Pauli. I've been to watch Dukla Prague in the Czech Republic which was great fun with good beer, but not great football. Worst experience 'abroad' was at Hearts; dire football, no beer and and no atmosphere. To be fair, it was when they were in the shit and getting relgated from the SPL

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I've done a few games over the past 3 or 4 seasons:
- Sparta prague, Espanyol, Cracovia, Willem ii (twice), Den haag, Fc twente, Cologne and PSV Eindhoven.

Really enjoyed each game. The atmosphere and the stadiums all felt pretty unique. I saw the Willem ii/Breda derby so that was probably the most intense atmosphere as you'd expect but I was probably most impressed by Fc Twente. They played Den Haag on a night game and the two tiered stand behind the goal all stood and sang throughout, lots of flags and some flares etc. Lovely ground too, felt like a smaller version of Old trafford or Celtic park.

PSV's ground was immense, considering it only holds around 35k it felt twice the size, especially from outside!!

I'm hoping to do an Italy trip this season or next. 

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I've done a few grounds in Belgium and Latvia albeit sometime ago. The best advice I could give is do your homework. In a number of countries you can't just turn up at a stadium and watch a game. Research where you can purchase tickets from, what form of ID you might need, where you might sit (we were 'encouraged' to move from a poorly defined designated away fans area at Skonto Riga once) and how to get to and from the stadiums. Be prepared for a heavy armed police presence including water cannons. 

Despite the above don't be put off as it can be a friendly rewarding experience. 

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On 20/08/2019 at 18:40, LondonBristolian said:

Quick question. I need to book a holiday at some point and occasionally toy with the idea of going to watch domestic football elsewhere in Europe. Obviously Germany springs to mind but I'm open to going anywhere. My questions is what stadiums would anyone who has done this recommend in terms of either the atmosphere, the uniqueness of the stadium or anything else?

Valencia, lovely stadium, great City, and a beach

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On 20/08/2019 at 18:40, LondonBristolian said:

Quick question. I need to book a holiday at some point and occasionally toy with the idea of going to watch domestic football elsewhere in Europe. Obviously Germany springs to mind but I'm open to going anywhere. My questions is what stadiums would anyone who has done this recommend in terms of either the atmosphere, the uniqueness of the stadium or anything else?

Would recomemd Spain. - either Barca  or RM - tickets easy to get ...as long as they aren’t playing each other!

Tickets sold in city centre prior to games.

And. also, fantastic cities.

Edited by ScottishRed

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I went to Wolfsburg vs Bielefeld in Germany - cracking day out - brill stadium, cheap to get in, incredible atmosphere, can drink beer while you watch the game... 

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Hertha Berlin was a cracking experience. Saw them v Borussia Dortmund a couple of years ago and everything about it was brilliant. Atmosphere, beer, stadium, free travel on day of the game with a match ticket. And the city itself is amazing. I’d imagine Union would be just as good if not better. 

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I've done games in Belgium (Royal Antwerp, Anderlecht & Lokeren) and Holland (Willem II & AZ Alkmar). The atmospheres in these 2 countries can be very good if you go to the right game. There is also multiple games stretched over a weekend so its possible to do more than one game with minimal travelling.

Another option would be Sweden. I went to AIK V Hammarby a number of years ago and the atmosphere was amazing.  Although that was in the old Rasunda stadium which has now been demolished.

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I’ve been to see Benfica. Really enjoyable experience. I also did a stadium tour for about 10 euros which was decent. Lisbon is a stunning city with lots of stuff to do. 

Only match day negative - they only serve alcohol free sagres inside the stadium!

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Barcelona hasn’t been mentioned - too obvious perhaps. Fantastic city in its own right with good beaches, great architecture. It’s easy to get Camp Nou tickets as a rule, as it’s so big. Great experience.

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Istanbul. Went to Fenerbache vs Trabzonspor in April during a business trip.  Incredible atmosphere made all the more strange by there being no Trabs fans!  Definitely an experience. 

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1 hour ago, Welcome To The Jungle said:

I cannot recommend going to the San Siro before they knock it down enough. At night it is a very intimidating place, steeped in history and so iconic. Fans are good too.

 

Seconded. Went a few years ago and saw Inter v Napoli, and combined it with Atalanta v Genoa the following day.

Atalanta is worth a visit as well if you want an old stadium with character and atmosphere, it's in Bergamo which is about 40 mins away from Milan by train.

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32 minutes ago, Northern Red said:

Seconded. Went a few years ago and saw Inter v Napoli, and combined it with Atalanta v Genoa the following day.

Atalanta is worth a visit as well if you want an old stadium with character and atmosphere, it's in Bergamo which is about 40 mins away from Milan by train.

A club that's interested me for a few years- seem to be punching well above their weight despite trading out academy products and have generally improved each year of this.

Edited by Mr Popodopolous

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4 minutes ago, Crackers Corner said:

I always thought fiorentina would be a good day out with Florence a great city also.

It is.

Reminds me when I was on holiday in Italy about 4 years ago with mates- give or take a week it's 4 years, August 2015 anyway.

Looked on "nearby events" on FB and it said Fiorentina-AC Milan, opening night of season- problem is it was a Sunday evening and we went home on the Friday or the Saturday- certainly within distance of Florence if just a couple of days longer...nice opening round to the season!

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I went to Marseille v Monaco, good atmosphere, impressive stadium.

Fiorentina is an open air stadium, nice city. 

Basel have some partisan supportership.

Would like to visit Germany next.

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3 hours ago, Welcome To The Jungle said:

I cannot recommend going to the San Siro before they knock it down enough. At night it is a very intimidating place, steeped in history and so iconic. Fans are good too.

 

My niece is off to study in Milan for this coming uni year. This combined with the San Siro's last stand means I hope/plan to get over for an AC game this season.

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1 hour ago, Mr Popodopolous said:

A club that's interested me for a few years- seem to be punching well above their weight despite trading out academy products and have generally improved each year of this.

Yeah, they traditionally yo-yoed between Serie A and B, but in the last few years have stabilised in Serie A and have started qualifying for Europe regularly. They'll be in the CL for the first time this season, although their home games will be at the San Siro as their ground isn't up to standard for European competition.

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I used to travel and follow Lazio regularly and have been to many of the Italian Stadiums...not so much these days, as imo, unless it's a local Derby, the atmosphere and lack of a decent size crowd has made it less attractive.

Never been a fan of the San Siro... awful pitch and middle of nowhere.

Genoa is a great place to visit and the Stadium generates a decent atmosphere.

Lazio v Roma are always fantastic spectacles.

If you want to combine a City type break with football, then Sienna, Firenze, Turin, Rome, Napoli, Genoa, Verona, Bologna are all places I'd recommend to visit, if you want a bit of culture, lovely food and wine, and some footy on the side.

Pisa especially is a great place to base yourself with easy access to Firenze, Sienna and Lucca...all great places in their own right.

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Went to Flora (from estonia) v frankfurt in the europa league last month. 

Good atmosphere (probably helped by it being floras biggest ever home crowd and the excellent frankfurt fans) and the football was of a really good quality. 

Only a fiver to get in an tallinn is a nice city. Well worth a weekend over

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On 20/08/2019 at 18:40, LondonBristolian said:

Quick question. I need to book a holiday at some point and occasionally toy with the idea of going to watch domestic football elsewhere in Europe. Obviously Germany springs to mind but I'm open to going anywhere. My questions is what stadiums would anyone who has done this recommend in terms of either the atmosphere, the uniqueness of the stadium or anything else?

Villarreal is a really good place to watch football not the best stadium in the world but a good atmosphere and resonably cheap , Valencia is  one of the best I’ve been too great atmosphere and the city’s fantastic.

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Hard to beat Germany. There are cheap flights to Cologne and Düsseldorf and either makes a good base with several clubs easily accessible on local trains including Dortmund, Schalke, Fortuna Düsseldorf, Bayer Leverkusen, Borussia Monchengladbach and FC Koln. The German National Football Museum in Dortmund is also well worth a visit. Due to TV, games are spread across the weekend; with my son we got to see 3 games in 4 games. On a non match day try and get to Wuppertal and ride the Schwebebahn  (suspension railway) - not to be missed!

D074275B-1F48-4F63-B17C-AB3952DD567F.jpeg

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3 hours ago, Mr Popodopolous said:

It is.

Reminds me when I was on holiday in Italy about 4 years ago with mates- give or take a week it's 4 years, August 2015 anyway.

Looked on "nearby events" on FB and it said Fiorentina-AC Milan, opening night of season- problem is it was a Sunday evening and we went home on the Friday or the Saturday- certainly within distance of Florence if just a couple of days longer...nice opening round to the season!

Great story! 😜

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