Singapore National Stadium – Already ahead of the pack

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The Singapore National Stadium has wasted little time establishing itself as one of the world’s great venues, earning Southeast Asia’s No.1 overall ranking on FourFourTwo’s list of the world’s Top 100 Football Stadiums.

We at FourFourTwo underwent an exhaustive process to scour the globe and rank the best stadiums, from Argentina to Ecuador, the United States to the Netherlands, and everything in between.

Out of the final list of 100, Singapore’s sparkling new stadium came in at a lofty No.21, ahead of venues in South Korea, Malaysia, Australia and Thailand.

It was also ranked in front of some of football’s most recognised grounds, including Juventus Stadium (No.27), Arsenal’s plush Emirates Stadium (No.36) and America’s iconic Rose Bowl (No.49), home of the 1994 World Cup final.

Part of the new multi-purpose Singapore Sports Hub, the stadium is built on the site of the old national stadium in Kallang, with construction beginning in September, 2010.

Opened on June 30, 2014, it has already hosted a friendly match between Japan and Brazil, the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2015 SEA Games plus concerts from a number of international artists.

It is also the home of Singapore’s national football team, with Japan and Syria facing World Cup qualifiers at the venue this month. The ground record of 52,107 was set in July this year for the final of the Barclays Asia Trophy between English Premier League clubs Arsenal and Everton.

#FFT100STADIUMS The 100 Best Stadiums in the World: list and features here 

In one of the series of features on FourFourTwo’s Top 100 Stadiums, Global Digital Editor Gary Parkinson explained how the venues were chosen.

“Football is our religion. These are our temples,” he wrote. “Welcome to FourFourTwo’s celebration of the iconic places where we connect with the game we love.

"These are the destinations we long to visit, where we have our finest moments and darkest hours.

“As usual with FourFourTwo, we don't take these decisions lightly. Discussions took place over the course of months, involving our dozens-strong global network of writers and editors, eventually whittling down a long list and arguing our way to a consensus.

“Each candidate was judged on five criteria: history; atmosphere; capacity; architecture and environment; and that almost indefinable but viscerally obvious "wow factor".

“In short, how desperately would football fans want to go there?”

There is no doubt football fans across the globe will now be even more intent on visiting Singapore National Stadium, if they haven’t done so already.

So what about the Top 20 stadiums on the list? For those you’ll just have to check back to www.fourfourtwo.com/sg.

The top 20 are being published live in a globally synchronised move, starting at 9pm Singapore time this Friday night.

Photo: Weixiang Lim/FourFourTwo