The BayArena – or ‘home’ as Bayer Leverkusen
BAYARENA | Capacity: 30,210 | Location: Leverkusen, Germany | Home Club: Bayer 04 Leverkusen
Die Werkself have been making weekly pilgrimages to the BayArena since 1958, when the stadium first opened its gates as the Ulrich-Haberland-Stadion, named after the former chairman of Bayer AG, the pharmaceutical company that founded the Rhineland club.
The stadium’s design was based on Bochum’s Ruhrstadion, and was built section by section over the years, growing bit by bit alongside the demands of the club.
Back then it held 20,000 spectators, before Bayer added a further 2,500 seats in 1997 and in the process became the first all-seater stadium in Germany. It was renamed the BayArena the following year.
Further redevelopment took place between summer 2008 and 15 August 2009, when the remodelled BayArena was unveiled with its unique nest-like roof structure and enough space for 30,000 football fans.
Leverkusen christened the stadium with a 1-0 win over Hoffenheim, a fitting way to celebrate their newly refurbished surrounds.
The BayArena hosted its first Germany international on 18 December 1991 as Die Mannschaft routed Luxembourg 4-0, and it also staged four FIFA Women’s World Cup matches in 2011.
At the forefront of stadia technology, the BayArena broadcast the first live Bundesliga match in 3D when Leverkusen played Hamburg on 14 March 2010.