On 14 December 1947, one of the most iconic stadiums in the history of the game opened its doors. To mark the occasion, Real Madrid faced Portuguese side Os Belenenses in a friendly match. Sabino Barinaga holds the honour of being the first player to score in the stadium as he set the hosts on their way to a 3-1 triumph.
Seventy-two years on, the Santiago Bernabéu is undergoing redevelopment work, which will allow the stadium to retaining its status as a global reference, as explained by president Florentino Pérez in the latest club pin presentation ceremony: “We want the Santiago Bernabéu to be the greatest stadium in the world. Thanks to our resources, it will become the great stadium of the 21st century. It will be a leading arena in architectural terms and will feature cutting-edge technology, whilst also representing a revenue source. It’ll be the pride of all madridistas”.
The stadium has been known as the Santiago Bernabéu since 1955 in a tribute to the club’s legendary president. Real Madrid’s home has witnessed the Whites’ historic feats, some of the best players on the planet, whilst also having played host to some of the biggest matches in the game. For example, the arena has hosted four European Cup finals, the 1982 World Cup and 1964 European Championship finals as well as the 2018 Copa Libertadores showpiece.
Its global fame makes the Santiago Bernabéu one of Madrid’s major tourist attractions, with supporters from right across the planet visiting the arena on a daily basis. The stadium is home to the Tour Bernabéu, which offers fans the chance to get a glimpse of the club’s trophies and discover the madridistas’ history.