A lot is made of how loud a crowd is when atmosphere is talked about in footballing circles and very few clubs come close to the partisan roar of the Britannia Stadium.
As more and more grounds are being redeveloped, or clubs are moving stadiums, we are finding more of how modern grounds are not as good at utilising the noise made my the primeval bellowing of a fired up football audience.
The Britannia is a relatively new stadium, but the way the Potters’ fans create such an intimidating atmosphere there has been of huge benefit to their side. With only a small area between the touch line and the first row of seating, the Brit is a stadium where the fans can really intimidate the opposition and the three open corners allow the swirling wind to cause all sorts of problems – just ask Memphis Depay.
Here are the FOUR other stadia that come close to Stoke’s scary patch..
Even if it can’t be called Upton Park any more, it will be a sad day when the Hammers leave their current home.
As much as the Olympic Stadium will be a big step forwards for the club, the intimidating atmosphere at the Boleyn Ground has the fans almost on top of you as you take a corner and is a nasty trip for any side.
From their cheerleaders to their ‘ultras’, Crystal Palace generate one of the best atmosphere’s in European football at the moment and the flying play of Bolasie and Zaha certainly gets their fans going.
Again, this is a close stadium that perfectly holds in every cheer or boo from the fans and the Palace faithful make sure they get behind their side.
If anyone ever asks you to define loyalty, explain what a Newcastle United fan is like.
Even when their side dropped to the Championship, the crazy Geordies kept St James’ full and never floundered in their huge support of their side.
Even hatred for Mike Ashley can’t stop their dedication to the club and the owner’s decision to use the ground to promote his name was met with protest.
When, on the rare occasion, Newcastle are performing, the 52,000 seater stadium can probably be heard in Sunderland.
Similarly to West Ham, Spurs are due to be on the move in the not to distant future and it will be a shame to see the Lilywhites leave White Hart Lane.
Despite an endlessly annoying TV camera angle, the ground has a closed in design that seems to be ideal to develop the sort of hostile atmosphere that is so rare in more modern stadia.
In their Champions League run under Harry Redknapp, ‘The Lane’ was rocking under the lights and is a place that will be sorely missed.