Although German football and the Bundesliga bestow a whole variety of wonderful elements, there is one crown jewel in particular, that leaves English supporters overcome with envy.
It is of course Borussia Dortmund’s Signal Iduna Park or to give it its traditional name: the Westfalenstadion.
The model example of how safe standing can be utilized both sensibly and spectacularly, Dortmund’s famous old ground can play host to a staggering 80,720 supporters when at maximum capacity in Bundesliga mode. That is somewhat reduced for European nights, where standing remains outlawed, but when it’s full to the rafters on matchday, there’s nothing quite like it.
The south stand, Die Südtribüne, is Europe’s largest free-standing grandstand, nicknamed by Dortmund fans as ‘Die gelbe Wand’, or rather predictably, the yellow wall. Although there isn’t really any other word to describe it.
The sheer steepness of the stands sees the noise almost physically spill onto the pitch and when it’s at its finest, it produces some almost indescribable moments – see Oliver Neuville’s 91st minute winner over Poland in the 2006 World Cup for reference.