Which is the largest football stadium in the world?

Which is the largest football stadium in the world? Association football is, far and away, the most popular spectator sport on the planet, with nearly half the population of the world taking an interest. Indeed, football dominates most of Europe, South America, Africa and Asia, and it is no real surprise that some of the largest football stadiums in the world are to be found on those continents.

In Africa, for example, the First National Bank (FNB) Stadium, also known as Soccer City, in Nasrec, a suburb of Johannesburg, South Africa, is the third largest football stadium in the world. Originally built in 1987, the FNB Stadium was upgraded in preparation for the FIFA World Cup in 2010 – it was, in fact, the venue for the World Cup Final between Netherlands and Spain – and nowadays has a seating capacity of 94,736.

In Europe, the Camp Nou, which has been the home of Barcelona Football Club since 1957, is the largest football stadium on the continent and the second largest in the world. Built over a period of three years between 1954 and 1957, at a cost of 288,000,000 Ptas – approximately £3,500,000, allowing for inflation – Camp Nou has a seating capacity of 99,354 and the largest football stadium in Europe.

Perhaps surprisingly, the distinction of having the largest football stadium in the world belongs to Asia and, specifically, to North Korea, traditionally one of the least accessible countries in the world. The Rungrado May Stadium in the capital city, Pyongyang, was built in 1989 and has floor space in excess of 50 acres, not to mention capacity for 114,000 spectators.

Which team holds the record for the lowest number of points in a Premier League season?

Which team holds the record for the lowest number of points in a Premier League season? In March, 2019, Huddersfield Town were relegated from the Premier League after 32 matches of a 38-match season, making them just the third team, after Derby County and Ipswich Town, to be heading into the second-tier with half a dozen games remaining. However, even if the Terriers lose both of their remaining fixtures in the 2018/19 season, their total of 14 points will not be the lowest in Premier League history.

The unenviable record for the lowest number of points in a Premier League season is held by Derby County who, in 2007/08, amassed just 11. Newly, and unexpectedly, promoted, Derby County won just one game all season and, by the time they parted company with manager Billy Davies, by ‘mutual consent’, in November, 2007, had accumulated just 6 points from 14 matches and were bottom of the league. Davies’ replacement, Paul Jewell, failed to inspire a revival and, by the end of the season, Derby County had set a whole series of unwelcome Premier League records, including for fewest goals scored (20) and most goals conceded (89) – resulting in an eye-watering goal difference of -69 – and for most losses (29).

How many teams will contest the 2022 World Cup finals?

How many teams will contest the 2022 World Cup finals? The 2022 World Cup finals are due to kick-off at the 80,000-capacity Lusail Iconic Stadium – still in planning – in Lusail, Qatar, on November 21, 2022. At the time of writing, in April, 2018, the Qatari Football Association (QFA) is working on a 32-team tournament, featuring a total of 64 matches, although Gianni Infantino, President of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), will be seeking approval to expanding the tournament to 48 teams, and 80 matches, at the annual FIFA Congress. Indeed, a feasibility study conducted by FIFA has already identified the need for two additional stadiums – in addition to the minimum of eight already in planning, or under construction – in one or more countries in the Gulf if the World Cup is extended.

Of course, Qatar is still subject to a diplomatic, economic and travel embargo from its Gulf neighbours Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, among other countries so, with the Sultanate of Oman ruling itself out as a World Cup co-host, Infantino is rapidly running out of options. Kuwait, which has remained neutral during the diplomatic crisis, is the only viable alternative, but has no stadiums that meet FIFA standards and has additional human rights and cultural issues, including a complete ban on alcohol, to contend with, not to mention a national team ranked lower than Mauritius or Tahiti.

Which player has scored the most hat-tricks?

Which player has scored the most hat-tricks? In recent seasons, countless column inches have been devoted, not without justification, to the rivalry between two giants of the modern game, Cristiano Ronaldo, nowadays of Juventus and Portugal, and Lionel Messi, of Barcelona and Argentina. Between them, they have won every individual award in the game, including the coveted Ballon d’Or, or ‘Golden Ball’, every year between 2008 and 2017 and, although neither of them is getting any younger, their rivalry seems set to continue for a while yet.

In terms of hat-tricks, Cristiano Ronaldo, 33, just holds the edge over his nemesis, having chalked up a total of 52 trebles in his career to date, including 44 for Real Madrid. He has scored three goals in a game for Los Blancos 34 times in La Liga, seven times in the UEFA Champion League, twice in the Copa del Rey and once in the FIFA Club World Cup. The remainder of his hat-trick tally is made up of six for Portugal, one for Juventus, in the UEFA Champions League and one for Manchester United in the Premier League. By contrast, Messi, 30, has racked up 51 career hat-tricks, including 45 for Barcelona. His Barça record includes 33 hat-tricks in La Liga, eight in the UEFA Champions League, three in the Copa del Rey and one in the Spanish Super Cup; like Ronaldo, he scored six hat-tricks at international level, for Argentina.

For all their accolades, neither Ronaldo nor Messi is likely to come anywhere near the record of 92 career hat-tricks set by the Brazilian footballer Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pele, who also recorded 31 four-goal ‘pokers’ between 1956 and 1977.

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