The highest-capacity non-European stadiums

world stadiums
The highest-capacity non-European stadiums

Everyone is familiar with European stadiums such as Camp Nou, Wembley, Signal Iduna Park and others that hold record numbers of spectators. In this article, however, we will cover the top five highest-capacity stadiums outside of Europe.

1st of May Stadium, Pyongyang (DPRK)


It may come as a surprise to some, but North Korea is home to the world’s largest football stadium. It seats 114,000 spectators.

The stadium was built for the 13th International Youth Festival in 1989. Of course, the national team of North Korea plays its home matches here. But football is not the main sport on this arena. The stadium hosts competitions in athletics, wrestling and other sports. But its main purpose is to host the Arirang festival. It is a music and gymnastics event which has even made it into the Guinness Book of Records as the largest gymnastic display. 

Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne, Australia

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This remains Australia’s oldest arena, as it opened in 1854, before the continent’s first railway was even built. Back then the stadium could only seat 6,000 people. After several refurbishments, you can now seat 100,024 people.

As you might guess, cricket tournaments are held here mainly. But the Melbourne Cricket Ground also plays host to the national football team. It was the main venue for the Summer Olympics in 1956 and it played host to a football match during the 2000 Games.

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Soccer City, Johannesburg, South Africa

With a capacity of 94,736 people, Soccer City is the largest sports venue in Africa. South Africa’s most popular football club, Kaizer Chiefs, plays their home games at Soccer City. You can place your bets on the national league games at the Sportbet South Africa betting company.

In addition, Soccer City is the venue for South Africa’s home games, rugby tournaments and various concerts. The stadium has hosted international football tournaments such as the Africa Cup of Nations (1996, 2013) and the World Cup (2010).

Azteca, Mexico City (Mexico)

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The stadium can seat 87,523 spectators. The stadium is built at an altitude of 2,200 metres above sea level, making it one of the highest sports stadiums in the world.

Opened in time for the 1968 Olympic Games, Azteca has hosted many major football championships. In 1970 and 1986, for example, the arena hosted the World Cup finals. It was here that the legendary Pele and Maradona became world champions. In addition, the stadium hosted matches of the Pan American Games in 1975, the 1983 World Youth Championship, the Confederations Cup in 1999, and the Youth World Cup.

Over the years, Azteca has been home to a variety of teams. However, only FC America and the Mexican national team have played in the stadium since 1966.

In 1986, a football-unique incident occurred at the stadium. The referee showed red cards to absolutely all players. Players of the clubs America and Guadalajara, principle rivals, were sent off for a full-scale brawl.

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Bukit Jalil National Stadium”, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

The capacity of the stadium is 10,200 seats, but this was calculated along with the standing seats. Many stadiums simply do not have them. The seating capacity is much lower: 87,411.

The arena was built for the 1998 Commonwealth Games. In addition, the Bukit Jalil National Stadium has played host to the 2007 Asian Cup. The national team of Malaysia uses the arena as its home ground.

During their pre-season tour of Asia, famous European teams come to the Bukit Jalil to play friendlies against Asian teams. For instance, English giants such as Chelsea, Liverpool, Arsenal and Manchester United have already visited the venue.