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1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Swiss Football League – Stadia Review

This thread aims to provide a review of Swiss Football League Stadiums current state and future plans. The stadia of all 10 1st Divison and 10 2nd Division teams are represented.

As everyone knows, modern football was developed in England. Switzerland was among the first countries where it was “exported” to. Also in other areas of economy and culture, Switzerland was following early on new trends from England. It was especially the cosmopolitan-minded youth (students) in the globalization wave of the 1870-ies and 1880-ies that were susceptive to it. Swiss clubs founded in these times have often English names and F.C. stands for the English “Football Club” still today. The Lausanne Football and Cricket club of 1860 was probably the first Football Club in Continental Europe, FC St.Gallen of 1879 is together with Boldklub Kopenhagen the oldest still existing Football Club in Continental Europe.

FC St.Gallen in its early years:

Further on, Swiss students supported the process of football expansion to other regions of Europe, mainly the Mediterranean. The biggest football club of the world, FC Barcelona, was founded by the Swiss Hans Gamper.

Hans Gamper:

Internazionale Milan was founded by a group of Swiss and cosmopolitan Italians who left the nationalistic Milan CFC (today: AC Milan) where only Italians were allowed to play. Also some other first football clubs in cities in Italy, Southern France and Spain were founded or co-founded by Swiss, and the German football pioneer Walther Bensemann started to spread the game in his home country after learning it in his school years in Switzerland.

The Swiss Football Association was founded 1895, and was among the seven associations that founded FIFA in 1904. Already in 1906, Switzerland offered to host the first world cup and started preparations for it, but the tournament was not realized due to internal differences in several important national associations. The major international football tournament in the beginning was therefore the Olympic Tournament where the Swiss team achieved the silver medal in Paris 1924 in the Final against Uruguay. 1930 the first FIFA World Cup took place in Uruguay.

In the beginning of the 50-ies, the city of Lausanne built a (for that time) ultra-modern stadium - the Stade Olympique. In the wake of the preparation for the 5th FIFA World Cup 1954 in Switzerland, the stadium St.Jakob in Basel was built, and several other stadiums extended. The Final between Germany and Hungary was held in the Wankdorf stadium in Bern. The team of Switzerland reached the 1/4 –Finals by defeating Italy where it lost in a crazy game in the heat of Lausanne against Austria 5:7, the most high-scoring game in World Cup history.

World Cup 1954 in Switzerland:

While the game was globally promoted and professionalized from the Swiss offices of FIFA (since the 30-ies) and UEFA (since the 50-ies) with mostly Swiss staff, the football and its infrastructures in Switzerland itself were not taken care of on an equal level. The national team didn’t manage to stay at the top level internationally, and also concerning the stadiums, there were only smaller developments and no bigger extensions or fundamental design changes made anymore since the World Cup 1954. There was a negative attitude in Switzerland towards professionalism and commercialization in sports – and for some time in the 60-ies the building of new sports facilities was even forbidden as one of the measures to cool down the economic boom.

It was not until the 90-ies when the turnaround was managed. The national team qualified for the World Cup 1994 and the European Championship 1996. In 1995, finally, the National Football Association started to employ professional coaches for their youth teams for the first time. The results of these (late) changes are visible today, as the Swiss footballers are getting closer back again to the international top level.

Also concerning the stadia, Swiss cities started to react to developments in countries like Netherlands, England or Germany. The four biggest cities and their top teams started to plan new all-seater stadiums in the 90-ies. The first one was Basel with the inauguration in 2001. Geneva, Bern and Zurich followed. The competition between these cities played an important role. With the four stadiums built, or in process, Switzerland joined Austria in a bid to host the European Championship 2008. Austria had already two times been unsuccessful with their earlier bids alone or together with Hungary, respectively. But the bid of the two Alpine partners was successful in 2002 in a tough competition of 7 bids from totally 14 countries. So, there is, however, no stadium in Switzerland that has been built especially for Euro 2008. Switzerland joined the bid because the stadiums were already in the making.

The new stadia were successful. Each of them lead to a doubling of attendance figures. Geneva is a special case, because of poor management, after a promising start in the new stadium, Servette FC went bankrupt.

Were the 30’000+ stadiums in the four biggest cities a question mostly of the initiatives of the respective cities, the continuation of the stadium building boom, with smaller stadiums in smaller cities, is much more related with the more ambitious infrastructure Minimum Criteria, which the Swiss Football Association is applying now for its Super League and Challenge League teams. As an example, the Swiss Football League demands for Super League teams fully-covered stadiums with a minimum of 10’000 places from which a minimum of 2/3 should be seats. This puts pressure also on many smaller cities to either find a solution to modernize their stadiums, or otherwise see their team relegated for infrastructure reasons.

As a general impression, one can say that Switzerland is catching up with countries like Netherlands or Norway in terms of stadia infrastructure. If all planned projects are realized, the coverage of the country with football stadiums will be nearly perfect for the moment. There would be the right number of stadiums in the 40’000+, 30’000+ and 20’000+ area and only 2-3 additional cities would be left where a new 10’000-stadium could make sense as well.

General Information on Switzerland

Population: 8.1 million
Size: 41,285 sqm
GDP/capita (nominal): 81'000 USD

70% of the area are mountainous. This means in the 30% hilly Midlands where the majority of the population lives, the population density is actually quite high. There live 450 people per skm in this area. Few regions in Europe are more densely populated. It's like a long-stretching "city" of 350km length and ca. 50 km width from Lake Geneva (south-west) to Lake Constanze (north-east) with a population of ca. 6.5 million. Real rural areas are rare in this part and also the more rural mountain areas have quite high standards of architecture and infrastructure. Despite various traditional styles that can be found in many places, the “rural” areas of Switzerland are above-average urban, or at least sub-urban in character. The democratic and federal nature of the country is expressed in the fact that it has not only no head of state and no head of government, but also no capital. Bern is the federal city hosting the federal parliament and a big part of the federal government administration. The structure of Switzerland is traditionally based on the 26 cantons which enjoy a remarkable degree of independence. But agglomerations and, on a bigger scale, metropolitan regions, are gaining in importance. Depending on the definition, there are between 2 and 6 metropolitan regions covering Switzerland of which the majority are cross-border in nature involving areas of France, Germany or Italy, respectively. The biggest metropolitan region is Zurich, sometimes joined with the Basel area to form the “Northern Switzerland” economic and metropolitan region involving small shares of Germany and France. The second in importance economic growth area is the Lake of Geneva region, also called “Arc Lémanique”, which involves Geneva, Lausanne and some areas on the French side of the border.

Map of Switzerland:

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Super League (1st Division)


City Population: 170'000
Agglomeration: 730'000

SL-Team: FC Basel
- founded 1893
- 17x champion (incl. 2014)
- 11x cup-winner
- Video of the decisive championship game 2014 on the penultimate matchday in Aarau:
- UEFA Champions League/Champions Cup ¼-Final 73-74, 1/8-Final 02-03, 11-12, 14-15, UEFA Europa League/Cup, 1/2-Final 12-13, ¼-Final 05-06, 13-14
- Well-known former players: Ottmar Hitzfeld, Karl Odermatt, Maurizio Gaudino, Oliver Kreuzer, Murat Yakin, Hakan Yakin, Thimotée Atouba, Julio Hernan Rossi, Christian Gimenez, Ivan Rakitic, Zdravko Kuzmanovic, Mladen Petric, Philipp Degen, David Degen, Matias Delgado, Teofilo Cubillas, Markus Schupp, Pascal Zuberbühler, Otto Demarmels, Bernt Haas, Kléber, Patrick Müller, Adrian Knup, Felipe Caicedo, Vratislav Lokvenc, Eren Derdiyok, Raul Bobadilla, Xherdan Shaqiri, Granit Xhaka, Aleksandar Dragovic, Yann Sommer, Valentin Stocker, Geoffroy Serey Dié, Marcelo Diaz
- Well-known coaches: Helmut Benthaus, Christian Gross

Stadium: St.Jakob Park
- UEFA/League Capacity: 38’500
- Euro 2008 Capacity: 42’500
- Average League attendance FC Basel 13/14: 27’800
- Maximum League attendance FC Basel 13/14: 34’200
- Operational since: 2001 (old St.Jakob stadium: 1954)
- Photos of St.Jakob evolution 1953 – 2000:
- Will be venue of the 2016 Europa League Final
- Euro 2008 venue (including 1 semi-final and 2 quarter-finals)
- Venue of the 1969, 1975, 1979 and 1984 Cup Winners Cup Finals
- World Cup 1954 venue (old St.Jakob, including 1 semi-final)
- Venue of the Swiss Cup Final 2010 and six former Cup Finals (2001–2005, 2008)
- Since 2007 de facto the national stadium of Switzerland where the most important games of the national team are played due to the capacity and the natural pitch
- Perspectives: the stadium is suitable for Basel, and might be a candidate for a Europa League Final sometime in the future – the original St.Jakob had been built for the World Cup 1954 and then replaced by a new stadium in 2001 – this stadium had been designed by the world-famous local architects Herzog&deMeuron (Tate Modern, Miami Art Museum, Elbphilharmonie,,,) – St.Jakob Park was their first Stadium and kind of a playground for testing – later they moved on to build Allianz-Arena in Munich and the Olympic Stadium in Peking


City Population: 400'000
Agglomeration: 1,3 million

SL-Team: Grasshopper-Club Zurich
- founded 1886
- 27x champion (record)
- 19x cup-winner (record)
- Qualification for Champions League Group Stage in 1995 and 1996
- UEFA-Cup ½-Final 1978 and ¼-Finals 1981, European Champions Cup ¼-Finals 1979, European Cup Winners Cup ¼-Finals 1990
- Well-known former players: Trello & Xam Abegglen, Fredy Bickel, Pape Bouba Diop, Henri Camara, Stéphane Chapuisat, Giovane Elber, Ove Grahn, Heinz Hermann, Marcel Koller, Patrick Müller, Günter Netzer, Richard Nunez, Wynton Rufer, Ciriaco Sforza, Alain Sutter, Kubilay Türkyilmaz, Johann Vogel, Hakan Yakin, Murat Yakin, Reto Ziegler, Severino Minelli, Vittorio Pozzo, Raul Bobadilla, Pajtim Kasami, Senad Lulic, Izet Hajrovic, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Ricardo Cabanas, Steven Zuber, Mladen Petric, Roman Bürki, Shkelzen Gashi, Veroljub Salatic, Johan Vonlanthen
- Well-known coaches: Ottmar Hitzfeld, Christian Gross, Hennes Weisweiler, Timo Konietzka, Jürgen Sundermann, Helmuth Johannsen, René Hüssy, Albert Sing, Karl Rappan, Miroslav Blazevic, Leo Beenhakker, Hanspeter Latour, Rolf Fringer, Roy Hodgson, Marcel Koller, Krassimir Balakov
- Former Grasshoppers ground Hardturm (1929 - 2008, World Cup 1954 venue):

SL-Team: FC Zurich
- founded 1896
- 12x champion
- 8x cup-winner (in 9 finals, incl. 2014)
- video of cup title 2014:,
- European Champions Cup 1/2-Final in 1964 (against Real Madrid) and 1977 (against Liverpool), Champions League group stage 2009/2010 with an away win vs. Milan
- Well-known former players: Shaun Bartlett, René Botteron, Blerim Dzemaili, Iulian Filipescu, Hans Gamper, Daniel Gygax, Adrian Illie, Gökhan Inler, Daniel Jeandupeux, Jurica Jerkovic, Köbi Kuhn, Fritz Künzli, Shabani Nonda, Marcel Raducanu, Wynton Rufer, Ike Shorunmu, Francileudo Silva dos Santos, Klaus Stürmer, Herbert Waas, Rashidi Yekini, Gianpietro Zappa, Raffael, Almen Abdi, Ricardo Rodriguez, Josip Drmic, Admir Mehmedi, Joetex Frimpong, Ludovic Magnin, Johan Vonlanthen, Pedro Henrique
- Well-known coaches: Karl Rappan, Louis Maurer, Timo Konietzka, Daniel Jeandupeux, Köbi Kuhn, Gilbert Gress, Lucien Favre

Current Stadium: Letzigrund
- UEFA/League Capacity: 26’000
- Athletics Capacity: 28’000
- Euro 2008 Capacity: 30’000
- Concerts Capacity: 40’000 – 50’000
- Average League attendance FC Zurich 13/14: 9’600
- Maximum League attendance FC Zurich 13/14: 14’800
- Average League attendance Grasshopper-Club Zurich 13/14: 7’200
- Maximum League attendance Grasshopper-Club Zurich 13/14: 16’900
- Operational since: 2007 (old Letzigrund: 1925)
- Photos of old Letzigrund:
- Goodbye Letzigrund 2006:
- Venue of UEFA Euro 2008 and European Athletics Championships 2014
- One of the venues of the IAAF Diamond League and former IAAF Golden League
- Hosts international friendlies like Italy - Portugal, Italy - Russia, ....
- Perspectives: the new stadium was built on the spot of the old Letzigrund stadium, but with the pitch 8 meters below ground level - it is the realization of a unique vision by local architects Bétrix & Consolascio which is considered a benchmark internationally for this type of stadiums - the stadium’s design with all its details aims to cater for the needs of worldclass-athletics (yearly Diamond League meeting), a training center for Athletics (including indoor sprint hall) and Football, the logistics of big Rolling-Stones-type Rock concerts, but also as a meeting place for hobby athletes and the local community in general – the stadium with its Café and Restaurant is open as a “neighbourhood park” to the public during event-free days
- Second stadium: A purpose-built football stadium was planned to be built on the ground of the old Hardturm stadium. In 2003, the uniquely designed project "Pentagon" has been approved by the citizens with a large margin in a public vote, but later on it was successfully torpedoed by neighbours and environmental groups in a series of court trials. In 2013, the citizens voted with a small margin against a new project on the same site named "Hypodrom". In contrary to the "Pentagon" project, it would have been considerably smaller (30'000 -> 16'000 seats), and at the same time much more expensive, as it would have been nearly entirely publicly financed. The Hardturm site is now considered a dead end by most club and city responsibles. Even though club representatives had stated that there cannot possibly exist any alternative to the Hypodrom project, they suggested already a few days after the vote as a result their intent to build a privately-financed stadium on one of two suggested new sites.


City Population: 140'000
Agglomeration: 400'000

SL-Team: BSC Young Boys
- founded 1898
- the name of the club is a reference to one of the most successful teams at that time in Switzerland, the “Old Boys” from Basel
- 11x champion
- 6x cup-winner
- ½-Final European Champions Cup 58/59, ¼-Finals European Cup Winners Cup 1986, reached Europa League round of 32 in 10/11 thanks to overcoming Fenerbahce, Getafe and Odense, and the Europa League group stage in 12/13
- Well-known former players: Georges Bregy, Stéphane Chapuisat, Andrés Escobar, Lars Lunde, Piotr Nowak, Robert Prytz, Johan Vonlanthen, Hakan Yakin, Kamil Zayatte, Joetex Asamoah Frimpong, Toni Kallio, Kader Mangane, Gretar Steinsson, Seydou Doumbia, Gilles Yapi, Senad Lulic, Emmanuel Mayuka, Michael Silberbauer, Alexander Farnerud, Josef Martinez, Michael Frey
- Well-known coaches: Albert Sing, Gernot Rohr, Martin Andermatt, Timo Konietzka, Pal Csernai, Alexander Mandziara, Hanspeter Zaugg

Stadium: Stade de Suisse Wankdorf
- UEFA/League/Euro 2008 Capacity: 32’000
- Average League attendance BSC Young Boys 13/14: 17’600
- Maximum League attendance BSC Young Boys 13/14: 25’000
- Operational since: 2005 (old Wankdorf: 1925)
- Photos of Wankdorf evolution 1929 – 2005:
- Euro 2008 venue
- World Cup 1954 venue (old Wankdorf, including the World Cup Final Hungary - Germany)
- Major venue of Swiss Cup Finals
- Originally artificial pitch (except during Euro 2008), but switched back to natural pitch in 2012
- Perspectives: attendance of BSC Young Boys is rising and has reached higher levels than the popular local Hockey-Club SC Bern (biggest Hockey attendance in Europe)

Stade de Suisse hosting the Swiss Hockey League game SCL Tigers – SC Bern on 14th January 2007 with a (at that time) 30’000 record attendance in European Hockey:


City Population: 80'000
Agglomeration: 220’000

SL-Team: FC Luzern
- founded 1901
- 1x champion
- 2x cup-winner
- Cup Winners Cup ¼-Finals 1960
- Well-known former players: Ottmar Hitzfeld, Adrian Knup, Ludwig Kögl, Alex Frei, Remo Meyer, Blaise Nkufo, Kubilay Türkyilmaz, Petar Aleksandrov, Ike Shorunmu, Christoph Spycher, Ratinho, Pajtim Kasami, Joetex Frimpong, Hakan Yakin
- Well-known coaches: Albert Sing, René Hüssy, Paul Wolfisberg, Timo Konietzka, Egon Coordes, Friedel Rausch, Ciriaco Sforza

Current Stadium: Swisspor Arena
- League Capacity: 18’000
- UEFA Capacity: 15’800
- Average League attendance FC Luzern 13/14: 11’300
- Maximum League attendance FC Luzern 13/14: 15’200
- Operational since: 2011 (old Allmend: 1934)
- Included in a project and cross-financed by apartment buildings, public swimming pool and fitness center next door
- At first artificial pitch was planned, but it is utilising natural pitch now
- Perspectives: The citizens of Luzern have approved the new stadium in two votes: in February 2008 on the necessary change of the building zone classification, and in December 2008 on the project and its financing itself. Shortly after that, the naming right has been sold to insulation technology company Swisspor. With the new stadium, the average number of spectators has increased by 50%.

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)

City Population: 40'000
Agglomeration: 80’000

CL-Team: FC Thun
- founded 1898
- historically a lower leagues team, managed promotion to the 1st Division in 2002 and was relegated back to 2nd Division since 2008 – two years later, summer 2010, the team managed to return to Super League
- playing great football, Thun reached the 2nd place in the championship 04/05
- eliminated subsequently Malmö FF and Dynamo Kiev in Champions League Qualification and Sparta Prague in the Group stage, and reached UEFA-Cup 1/16-Final in 05/06 - in 11/12, Thun reached the Europa League qualification stage thanks to eliminating Palermo and Vllaznia, and in 13/14 the Europa League group stage thanks to having the better end against Partizan, Häcken and Sachkhere
- Well-known former players: Fabio Coltorti, Alex Frei, Eldin Jakupovic, Mauro Lustrinelli, Marc Schneider, Marco Streller, Adriano Pimenta, Andres Gerber, Timm Klose, Luca Zuffi
- Well-known coaches: Georges Bregy, Hanspeter Latour, Urs Schönenberger

Current Stadium: Arena Thun
- UEFA/League Capacity: 10’500
- Average League attendance FC Thun 13/14: 5’600
- Maximum League attendance FC Thun 13/14: 9’100
- Artificial pitch
- The compound Includes also a separate mall, underground parking and a gas station
- operational since: 2011
- Perspectives: In December 2007, the citizens of Thun have approved with 60% yes-votes the zone plan for the mostly privately financed project after they had rejected 2 years earlier a facility for a stadium project financed by the city budget. The head of the city administration said honestly, looking back, he is very happy that the citizens had rejected the first project which had been promoted by his administration, because it would have caused big financial problems for the city. Since 2012, some neighbours living several hundred meters away from the stadium protested against the noise. The protest was successful because out of financial reasons the operators had not fulfilled all the demanded building measures for noise reduction stipulated in the building licence - so the max. numbers of tickets to be sold per match has been temporarily reduced to 6'000.


City Population: 70'000
Agglomeration: 160’000

SL-Team: FC St.Gallen
- founded 1879
- Oldest still existing Football Club in Continental Europe together with Copenhagen Boldklub
- 2x champion
- 1x cup-winner
- Eliminated Chelsea in UEFA-Cup in 2000, reached Europa League group stage 13/14 thanks to overcoming Spartak in the qualification
- Well-known former players: Charles Amoah, Tranquillo Barnetta, José Cardozo, Mario Frick, Ionel Gane, Zeljiko Perusic, Jörg Stiel, Marco Tardelli, Armin Veh, Hakan Yakin, Ivan Zamorano, Hugo Rubio, Ermir Lenjani, Ivan Martic, Philippe Montandon, Kristian Nushi
- Well-known coaches: Albert Sing, Zeljiko Perusic, Helmuth Johannsen, Uwe Rapolder, Marcel Koller, Rolf Fringer

Stadium: AFG Arena
- UEFA Capacity: 18’000
- League Capacity: 20’000
- Average League attendance FC St.Gallen 13/14: 13’400
- Maximum League attendance FC St.Gallen 13/14: 18’300
- Operational since 2008
- During Euro 2008, AFG Arena was the home base / training camp of Romania
- The Swiss national team has played already several games in the stadium which has also played host to international friendlies like Spain - Serbia, Spain - Chile or Brazil - Bosnia/Herzegovina
- Perspectives: League Attendance has been rising in the new stadium by more than 25% even during the time in 2nd Division


City Population: 30'000
Agglomeration: 80’000

SL-Team: FC Sion
- founded 1909
- 2x champion
- 12x cup-winner (unbeatable in Cup-Finals so far, even in the time as a 2nd Division club! 11 finals – 11 victories)
- Eliminated Atletico Madrid in ’84 and Olympique Marseille in ’94 in UEFA-Cup
- FC Sion is the pride of the whole mountainous Canton (State) of Valais - supporters hail from villages in all valleys of a canton whose area is partly French- and partly German-speaking
- Well-known former players: Roberto Assis, Georges Bregy, Gabriel Calderon, Nestor Clausen, Ahmed Ouattara, Alain Geiger, Alexandre Rey, Raphaël Wicky, Joao Manuel Pinto, Gelson Fernandes, Stéphane Grichting, Essam El Hadary, Olivier Monterrubio, Kali, Alvaro Saborio, Emile Mpenza, Paito, Gennaro Gattuso, Kyle Lafferty, Oussama Darragi, Ronaldinho (as a youth player for a few months)
- Well-known coaches: Alberto Bigon, Miroslav Blazevic, Enzo Trossero, Daniel Jeandupeux, Gilbert Gress

Current stadium: Tourbillon
- League Capacity: 16’500
- Average League attendance FC Sion 13/14: 6’100
- Maximum League attendance FC Sion 13/14: 10’500
- Operational since: 1968
- Perspectives: A new stadium in Riddes, 15 km outside of Sion has been planned by the president of the club for many years in conjunction with a commercial center. After legal objections of a nearby monastic order and quarrels with parts of the clubs supporters and the city administration in Sion, the plans for a football stadium in Riddes have been put aside (the commercial center will probably be realised though).
- the city has invested CHF 7,5 Million to update the installations of the current stadium Tourbillon to make it comply with requirements of the Swiss Football League for the next ten years. Tourbillon will therefore also be eligible for UEFA Europa League Qualification games again. Only eventual group stage games would have to be played in Lancy (Stade de Genève), 150 km from Sion.
- spectator numbers have dropped drastically recently (by around 40% from an average of more than 10'000) due to many supporter groups boycotting home games because of disagreements with club policy


City Population: 20'000
Agglomeration: 70’000

SL-Team: FC Aarau
- founded 1902
- 3x champion
- 1x cup-winner
- Draw (0:0) in Giuseppe Meazza against Milan in European Champions Cup ’93
- nickname “The Un-Relegateables”, as a small team playing in the 1st Division since 29 years in a row! In summer 2010, the fairytale came to an end. Aarau was relegated to 2nd Division - in 2013 it managed to move up again to the highest level.
- Well-known former players: Roberto Di Matteo, Heinz Hermann, Emanuel Pogatetz, Wynton Rufer, Ciriaco Sforza, David Zdrilic, Pascal Zuberbühler, Silvan Widmer, Loris Benito, Artur Ionita, Shkelzen Gashi
- Well-known former coaches: Ottmar Hitzfeld, Rolf Fringer, Gilbert Gress

Future Stadium: Torfeld Süd
- League Capacity: 10’000
- Projected opening: 2016/2017
- Perspectives: The citizens of Aarau have approved a planning facility in October 2007 and the public share of the joint ownership for the stadium in the amount of CHF 17 Mio in February 2008 in the respective public votes. The project which includes the redevelopment of a whole neighbourhood with housing space, industry, craft and leisure has then been in the stage of public involvement in the configuration plan.
- The stadium itself will feature a shop, an underground athletics track and a big skate park (the replacement for an already existing skate park on the same spot), and a couple of flats in a separate building. There is also most probably gonna be realized a new train stop of a regional railway line in front of the stadium.
- The citizens have agreed also in a third vote on the „special zone Torfeld Süd“ in June 2010 to the project with a share of 70% YES-votes. There afterwards have been four objections pending against this zone, of which three are still not ruled out - so the date of the probable groundbreaking could not be fixed yet.
- A first project on the same spot had been dismissed by the population of Aarau in a vote in 2005 – the population was most of all negative about the size of the shopping center connected with it – the commercial space has been thereafter reduced in the new project.

Current Stadium: Brügglifeld
- League Capacity: 8’000
- Average League attendance FC Aarau 13/14: 5’400
- Maximum League attendance FC Aarau 13/14: 8’000
- Operational since: 1924
- Located in the neighbouring municipality of Suhr
- Perspectives: the stadium is not anymore approved for Super League football by the Swiss Football Association, the permission to play in this stadium has been extended though as Aarau is planning to build a new stadium


Vaduz - Village Population: 5’000
Liechtenstein - State Population: 35’000

CL-Team: FC Vaduz
- founded 1931
- 42x cup-winner of Liechtenstein (Liechtenstein teams play in the Swiss Leagues system, but have their own Cup Competition)
- Clearly the best team from Liechtenstein (totally 6 Football Clubs)
- Elimination of Ujpest Budapest in UEFA-Cup Qualification 2006 and subsequent home-victory against FC Basel (2:1)
- Well-known former players: Goran Obradovic, Steve Gohouri
- Well-known coaches: Hanspeter Zaugg, Mats Gren

Stadium: Rheinpark
- UEFA/League Capacity: 8’000
- Average (2nd Division: Challenge League) League attendance FC Vaduz 13/14: 1'400
- Maximum (2nd Division: Challenge League) League attendance FC Vaduz 13/14: 2’700
- Perspectives: Rheinpark allows Vaduz and Liechtenstein to play their international matches on home soil – if Vaduz move up again to Super League, they will have to enlarge their stadium to 10’000 places – plans for this exist.

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Challenge League (2nd Division)


City Population: 130'000
Agglomeration: 400'000

CL-Team: Lausanne-Sport
- founded 1896
- predecessor club Lausanne-Sports went bankrupt in 2003, the new club has meanwhile managed to return back to the 2nd Division starting with the U21-team of the old club which played in the 4th Division and was not affected by the bankruptcy
- Lausanne-Sports was one of the most successful teams of Swiss football, nicknamed “Kings of the Night” in the 60-ies because they were mostly playing in the evenings under floodlights and virtually unbeatable at home: 7x champion, 9x cup-winner, UEFA-Cup ½-Finals 1958, European Cup Winners Cup ¼-Finals 1965, and it was the team where the Swiss “Player of the Century” Stéphane Chapuisat started his professional career where already his father and grand-father played an important role
- reached Europa League group stage as a 2nd Division team in 2010, eliminating the First Division teams Banja Luka, Randers and Lokomotive Moscow
- Well-known former players: Max Abegglen, Giancarlo Antognoni, Stéphane Chapuisat, Blaise Nkufo, Charles Antenen, Fabio Celestini, Lorik Cana, Fritz Künzli, Andres Gerber, Léonard Thurre, Matt Moussilou, Chris Malonga
- Well-known coaches: Karl Rappan, Peter Pazmandy, Umberto Barberis. Miroslav Blazevic

Possible future stadium: Stade de Tuilère
- UEFA/League Capacity: 12’000
- Projected opening: 2019
- Artificial pitch planned
- Perspectives: After a successful public vote in spring 2009, the new custom-built Football Stadium should have been realized in a new sports park near the lake together with an olympic swimming pool and meeting rooms. For this "Stade de Léman" or "Stade de Vidy", even the final project (by bmp/Ferrari) was chosen: But the original plan has been abandonned soon after that in 2012 as the city government wants to build now more accomodation on that site. The new site for the football stadium is instead close to the site of the current "Stade Olympique" in the northern part of the city.

In March 2015, the winner project for the stadium has been presented: Image de synthèse © loomn architektur visualisierung--672x359.jpg

Athletics and the Diamond League meeting "Athlétissima" are supposed to move to a slightly enhanced existing small "Stade de Coubertin" in the south of the city near the Lake:

Current stadium: Stade Olympique de la Pontaise
- UEFA/League Capacity: 16’000
- Average (1st Division: Super League) attendance Lausanne-Sport 13/14: 3’700
- Maximum (1st Division: Super League) attendance Lausanne-Sport 13/14: 8’900
- Operational since: 1904 (since 1954 in the current form)
- World Cup 1954 venue (including the opening game and a semi-final)
- During Euro 2008, Pontaise was the home base/training camp of the Netherlands
- Perspectives: the stadium is also used for the yearly world-class athletics event “Athletissima” (IAAF Diamond League) and as Lausanne is the HQ of the International Olympic Committee, it has also a certain symbolic meaning. It has been built in the current form in 1949 and was one of the venues of World Cup 1954 – a refurbishment has been refused during recent years and the stadium is bound to be deconstructed in favour of a new ecologically progressive residential district for 2’000 inhabitants around the years 2016-2018.


City Population: 60'000
Agglomeration: 150'000

CL-Team: FC Lugano
- founded 1904
- The club founded 1904 was 3x champion and 3x cupwinner and went bankrupt in 2002. The remaining parts of the club merged with neighbour Malcantone Agno in 2003 which reached the 4th place in the 2nd Division in 2004. The club was subsequently renamed into AC Lugano, and last year FC Lugano.
- Well-known former players: Mauro Galvao, Dida, Christian Gimenez, Julio Hernan Rossi, Ottmar Hitzfeld, Otto Luttrop, Maurizio Ganz, Valon Behrami, Nestor Subiat, Ludovic Magnin, Kubilay Türkyilmaz, Claudio Sulser, Dario Zuffi, Christian Gross, Igor Shalimov, Mohammed Kallon, Gabriel Urdaneta, Mohamed Kader, Mario Gavranovic
- Well-known coaches: Alfredo Foni, Otto Luttrop, Albert Sing

Possible future stadium: Cornaredo (new)
- UEFA/League Capacity: 10’000
- Project chosen: 2013. Possible groundbreaking: not known yet.
- Includes a multifunctional indoor sport hall and offices
- The chosen project would be built on the training fields adjecent to the current Cornaredo stadium, covering partially the Cassarate stream. The current stadium would be used mainly for athletics and public sports including the preserved old and small main stand from the 50-ies. The "Monte Bré"-stand from the 80-ies on the other hand would be destructed to make space for the new football stadium.

Current stadium: Cornaredo
- League Capacity: 10’500
- Average League attendance FC Lugano 13/14: 1'700
- Maximum League attendance FC Lugano 13/14: 3’100
- Operational since: 1951
- World Cup 1954 venue
- During Euro 2008, Cornaredo was the home base / training camp of Sweden


City Population: 20'000
Agglomeration: 70'000

CL-Team: FC Wil
- founded 1900
- 1x cup-winner
- FC Wil managed to move up from 4th to 2nd Division with Christian Gross in charge on his first appointment as a head coach in the beginning of the 90-ies. Before this time, FC Wil had never been in the national spotlight. Between 2002 and 2004, Wil even played two years in the 1st Division, participated in UI-Cup and UEFA-Cup and won the Swiss Cup 2004. On 3.11.2002, Wil won the 1st Division home game against superior regional rival FC St.Gallen with the result of 11:3! 3.11. became subsequently a holiday in Wil since then – Wil supporters celebrate it every year.
- Well-known former players: Charles Amoah, Daniel Imhof, Mauro Lustrinelli, Mart Poom, Moustapha Salifou, Fabian Schär, Kwang-Ryong Pak
- Well-known coaches: Christian Gross, Hanspeter Latour, Marcel Koller, Uli Forte, Pierre-André Schürmann, Martin Andermatt

Current Stadium: Sportpark Bergholz
- League Capacity: 6’000
- Average League attendance FC Wil 13/14: 1'400
- Maximum League attendance FC Wil 13/14: 2’400
- artificial pitch
- expandable for Super League
- Operational since: 2013 (old Bergholz: 1963)
- The football stadium became a remodelled Challenge League stadium, but would not be compatible for Super League.
- The city council has run a project competition and chosen a project and general contractor for the renovation/rebuilding of Bergholz sport center (openair and indoor swimming pools, ice stadium) which includes also the stadium of FC Wil.
- The project passed successfully the city parliament and the details are cleared up. The final say had the population of Wil which approved the project with a price tag of CHF 58 Million which includes the remodeling of the whole 50 years old sports center including ice rink, indoor and outdoor swimming pools on 27th November 2010 with 61% Yes-votes.
- The football stadium as the first part of the new Sportpark Bergholz was opened in summer 2013 only two and a half years later and one year ahead of schedule

That's how it looked like until 2012:


City Population: 40'000
Agglomeration: 70'000

CL-Team: FC Schaffhausen
- founded 1896
- played 54 years in the 2nd Division, partially also lower, then Super League 2004-2007, then relegated to 3rd and even 4th Division - now back again in the 2nd Division, and thriving there
- Well-known former players: Roberto Di Matteo, Jogi Löw, Geni Meier, Fabio Coltorti, Sébastien Roth, Daniel Pavlovic, Johan Vonlanthen
- Well-known coaches: Jupp Derwall, Jürgen Seeberger

Possible future stadium: FCS Park
- UEFA/League Capacity: 10’000
- Possible Groundbreaking: 2014?
- Artificial pitch
- Solar panels on the roof
- 100% privately financed through the rents of various commercial tenants (specialty shop, outlets, medical services, gym)
- Webpage:
- Perspectives: even though Schaffhausen has been temporarily relegated down to the 4th Division, the project of the new stadium has still been pursued - the city parliament has passed a change of the zone classification of the land where the stadium is planned to be built. The building permission has been approved in November 2009. A new general contractor owned by the FC Schaffhausen president has taken over the project from the old one who has quit. Additional to several smaller tenants the main retail tenant has been found in November 2010. As this will be a furniture retail warehouse and not a shopping center, the whole project was reduced in size from CHF 140 Million to 95 Million. Some groundwork has already started at the projected site, but there are still some financial and political question marks to solve, before the construction could really start.
- The city parliament of Schaffhausen decided to contribute a small amount of CHF 2 Million to the building costs of the stadium plus a contribution of CHF 60'000 per year to the operating costs. A group of opposing citizens gathered enough signatures for a referendum and in this referendum a majority of the local population denied in March 2015 this contribution to be made. The president of FC Schaffhausen who as a real estate entrepreneur is at the same time also planning the building of the stadium himself, will most probably try to realise the project also without the city's contribution.

Current stadium: Breite
- League Capacity: 7’300
- Average League attendance FC Schaffhausen 13/14: 1'600
- Maximum League attendance FC Schaffhausen 13/14: 3’000
- Breite has been host to many games of youth national teams like the U21 in the past, but is not eligible for such games anymore by UEFA
- Perspectives: Breite is to be replaced by FCS Park – the Breite area would in this case be redevelopped - including most probably housing space.


City Population: 30'000
Agglomeration: Geneva (780'000)

CL-Team: Servette FC Genève
- founded 1890
- 17x champion
- 7x cup-winner
- Servette is behind Grasshoppers all-time nr.2 in Swiss Football
- ¼-Finals in European Cup Winners Cup 1967, 1979 & UEFA-Cup 2002
- 2004 the corporation Servette with the professionals went bankrupt, but the association survived and continued with the U-21 team in the 3rd Division – meanwhile Servette association reached the 2nd Division
- Well-known former players: Trello Abegglen, Sonny Anderson, Jacques Fatton, Lucien Favre, Alex Frei, Mohamed Kader, Christian Karembeu, Patrick Müller, Oliver Neuville, Martin Petrov, Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, Alen Skoro, Philippe Senderos, John Eriksen, Fabrizio Zambrella, Julian Esteban, Igor Dobrowolski, José Sinval, Bernd Dörfel, François Moubandjé
- Well-known coaches: Lucien Favre, Vujadin Boskov, Gilbert Gress, Peter Pazmandy, Michel Renquin, Jürgen Sundermann, Karl Rappan

Stadium: Stade de Genève La Praille
- UEFA/League/Euro 2008 Capacity: 30’000
- Average League attendance Servette FC 13/14: 3’000
- Maximum League attendance Servette FC 13/14: 4’200
- Euro 2008 venue
- Operational since: 2003
- Charmilles stadium on a different location in Geneva was venue of World Cup 1954
- Perspectives: Servette is currently playing in the Challenge League but now with ambitions to promote to the Super League - meanwhile, the stadium is full rather for international games, concerts and special events of other kind of sports

Winter Classic 2014: HC Genève-Servette - Lausanne HC

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)

City Population: 110'000
Agglomeration: 130'000

CL-team: FC Winterthur
- founded 1896
- 3x champion
- Leader of the all-time 2nd Division ranking
- FC Winterthur reached 1909 the final of the Sir Thomas Lipton Trophy, one of the first international tournaments of football history
- Winterthur has a good youth department with the U21-team playing in the 3rd Division which is exceptional for a traditional Challenge League club
- Well-know former players: Timo Konietzka, Fritz Künzli, Jogi Löw, Bora Milutinovic, Peter Risi, Dario Zuffi, Dieter Eckstein, Martin Andermatt, Daniel Gygax, José Gonçalves, Pajtim Kasami, Admir Mehmedi, Innocent Emeghara, Fabian Frei, Luca Zuffi, Ermir Lenjani

Extension: Schützenwiese
- League Capacity: 8'000 - 10'300
- Some necessary, basic improvements have been made in 2013: new, stronger floodlights, and fixed installations (concrete steps, catering, toilets, barriers, entrance) in the guest fans standing area
- Groundbreaking Extension 1: 2014 - new opposite stand has been opened in February 2015
- Groundbreaking Extension 2: depending on results, not earlier than 2014
- the reponsibles have decided against an iconic design and in favour of a flexible extension of single stands („British style“).
- the dedicated CHF 10 Million will be used to adapt the main stand to new requirements, increase the power of the floodlights and build a new all-seater stand opposite the main one
- if FC Winterthur manages to promote to Super League, the building permission needs to be ready to build two additional new stands behind the two goals in a similar style and extend the capacity to the needed 10‘000

Current stadium: Schützenwiese
- League Capacity: 8’500
- Average League attendance FC Winterthur 13/14: 2’000
- Maximum League attendance FC Winterthur 13/14: 3’300
- Real capacity of the current stadium is 15’000, but only 8’500 are allowed to pass the gates. There has been an evaluation of 4 possible locations for a new stadium approved for Super League by the Swiss Football League with a capacity of 10’300 (entirely covered, of which 7’000 seating).
- Two years ago, the city administration has decided to move forward and develop a concept concerning remodeling in stages of the current stadium at Schützenwiese (which is in possession of the city) until approximately 2015.


City Population: 50’000
Agglomeration: 100’000

CL-Team: FC Biel-Bienne
- founded 1896
- 1x champion
- Well-known former players: Robert Ballamann, Sani Emmanuel
- Well-known coach: Jupp Derwall

Future Stadium: Stades de Bienne
- UEFA/League Capacity: 5’200
- Expandable to 10'000 (eg. in case Biel moves up to Super League)
- Standard UEFA 2
- Future home stadium for the Women's National Team and the Men's U-21 National Team
- Duplex stadium football + ice-hockey (capacity: 7'000) plus an additional ice-rink for curling and four football training pitches
- Under construction, opening projected for summer 2015
- While FC Biel has been for a long time a lower leagues team and is back in the 2nd Division since 2008, the ice-hockey team EHC Biel (last season including lockout-players Tyler Seguin and Patrick Kane) is playing in the 1st Division (NLA) and has always been the most popular team in the city. Their current stadium is located close by the future Stades de Bienne and hosts 6'200 spectators.
- PPP project financed mostly by the general contractor and the selling of land, and to a smaller extent a financial contribution by the Canton of Berne - the city and the clubs don't have to pay anything. On the ground floor, there will be a retail park.
- Biel is already today something like the home base of Swiss sport hosting the Federal Agency for Sport and its training facilities utilised as the trainings center for several sports like most notably gymnastics, plus the national training center of Tennis, and the schools/education possibilites connected with it. With Stades de Biennes, the "City of Watches" will expand that role to notably football and ice-hockey. While there are plans to build an additional third ice-rink in order to attract the National Ice-Hockey Federation to Biel, contracts with the Swiss Football Association have been already signed. The Swiss Women's Football Academy has been moved already this summer from a village in central Switzerland to Biel. Some of the most talented young female footballers will in the future train at Stades de Bienne and go to school in Biel. This will provide a modest, but steady income source for Stades de Bienne from the Football Association. Furthermore, the Women's National Team and the Men's Under-21 National team will play most of their home games in Stades de Bienne.
- Project history: In December 2007, Biel citizens have approved with 75% yes-votes the development plan “Bönzingenfeld” which involves a retail store, fitness gym, offices, a public ice rink, a curling hall, and a Double-stadium (“Stades de Bienne”), one for Football (6’000) and one for Hockey (7’000) right next to eachother and linked by a covered public place. There was however a second public vote necessary in March 2010 because of considerable additional costs before the project can really start - and it was also successful.

Current Stadium: Gurzelen
- League Capacity: 15’000
- Average League attendance FC Biel 13/14: 1'000
- Maximum League attendance FC Biel 13/14: 2’800
- Operational since: 1913
- Perspectives: the stadium will be replaced by Stades de Bienne in 2015 – the Gurzelen property is sold and subject to redevelopment, possibly by the adjacent Omega (Swatch) headquarters - Gurzelen is the most outdated and deteriorated stadium in Swiss football - FC Biel didn't get the permission by the Football League to play in this stadium anymore for the season 12/13 - they had to move to Maladière in Neuchâtel (30km distance) - for the season 13/14, FC Biel, after some adjustments and because Stades de Bienne is under construction, got an extra permission to return to the 100 years old Gurzelen for the probably penultimate season


City Population: 8'000
Agglomeration: Como (270'000)

CL-team : FC Chiasso
- founded 1905
- the club first started in Swiss football, played then for ten years 1913-1923 in Lombardian Leagues and returned to the Swiss Football Association after that
- played for a long time in the 1st Division, between 1934-1965 more than 30 years in a row, with the 2nd place in 1950/51 as best result, together with three participations in the Swiss Cup Semi-Finals
- the so far last spell in the top division was in the season 1992-93 - in recent years switching forth and back between 2nd Division and 3rd Division
- Well-known former players: Valon Behrami, Rafael de Araujo, José Altafini, Otto Pfister, Gianluca Zambrotta

Current stadium: Comunale
- League Capacity: 11’200
- Average League attendance FC Chiasso 13/14: 800
- Maximum League attendance FC Chiasso 13/14: 1’500
- Perspectives: There are no future projects known. Certain refurbishments could become an issue. A new stadium though is very unlikely.


City Population: 20'000
Agglomeration: 20'000

CL-team: FC Wohlen
- founded 1904
- historically a lower leagues team, Wohlen promoted to the 2nd Division in 2002 and has since established itself in this league, sometimes even being in touch with the top teams
- Well-known former players: Ciriaco Sforza

Current stadium: Niedermatten
- League Capacity: 3’000
- Average League attendance FC Wohlen 13/14: 1’000
- Maximum League attendance FC Wohlen 13/14: 1’800
- The stadium was opened in 2004 and is Challenge League compatible
- Niedermatten was the venue of the Women's Swiss Cup Final 2010. It was the first stand-alone event with live TV coverage. So far, the Women's Cup Final has always been held together with the Men's Cup Final on the same day and in the same stadium


Village Population: 1'000
Agglomeration: none

CL-team : FC Le Mont
- founded 1942
- traditionally a non-league team from a village north of Lausanne, they have managed in 2014 for the second time after 2009/2010 to move up to the second tier of Swiss football with a team consisting of many loaned talents from Super League clubs who pay most of their salary, even the manager of the team is doing this as a sidejob and has a 80%-job in a community administration
- well-known former player: Thomas Häberli

Current stadium: Sous-Ville
- League Capacity: 2’500
- Average League attendance FC Le Mont 13/14 (3rd Division: Promotion League): 200
- The homeground of FC Le Mont being an average countryside amateur football ground is not eligible for Challenge League.
- The Stade Olympique of Lausanne (Pontaise) is located very closely, only 3km distance from Le Mont, but the club has disputes with both the city of Lausanne and the main tenant Lausanne-Sport, plus the rent there is probably too expensive for them
- So, Le Mont plays this season in a small stadium eligible for Challenge League in the village of Baulmes, 36km distance from Le Mont on the French border. The local FC Baulmes played between 2004 and 2007 in Challenge League.

Homeground of FC Le Mont (Terrain du Châtaignier)

2,141 Posts
Great post railcity :applause: :applause:

There have been built some nice stadiums in the last couple of years and it looks like there will be more in the future.
As a result of this attendances are rising very well, from an average of 5600 in 2000 to 9600 in 2007.
In my opinion there are only 2 really weak stadiums left in the Super League, Thun and Aarau. Hopefully the projected stadiums for this cities can be realizied, it won't be easy.
I hope Servette can raise to the 1st Division again soon, shame to see such a stadium in the Challenge League.

920 Posts
Exellent work Railcity - a man couldn't ask for a more comprehensive overview. Some nice new developments over there as well.

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
...between melancholy and exuberance....wild and peaceful like a New Orleans funeral....Hardturm-Stadium is history....

Yesterday, after the game against Neuchâtel Xamax, fans of the home team Grasshoppers-Club Zurich celebrate the "Finissage" of their stadium and take their personal souvenirs home - happy deconstruction of a stadium as a social event. Very popular are information boards (eg. toilet signs, commercials), the chairs, the mirrors from the toilets, and of course a piece of the "holy pitch". The Club is giving away thousands of pizza-boxes for this purpose. In return, thanks to the fans, they save some money on the demolition company. ;)

The game was lost 1:2, the team is struggling and currently ranked in the lower half of the table - but on this day, it was not the main issue. After honouring the biggest fan of GC, handicapped Flavio Sturzenegger who nearly hasn't been missing any home game since 30 years, the biggest successes of Grasshoppers in 78 years history on the home ground Hardturm are shown on a big video screen.

photo-report (various sources):


1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Hm, what will happen now with the 'old' Hardturm?
The new stadium won't be built anytime soon.
Will they demolish it now or wait till the new stadium is ready to be built?
They have already successfully taken many legal hurdles - the current is the last one. Then they will based on this look at it once more from the commercial point of view which will not take much time, as the data is already there. It's quite probable that there will be a decision in about 2-3 months. And until then, the stadium (or what is left of it after yesterday ;)) will still be standing there.

467 Posts
Good thread very interesting, Switzerland is a great place but unfortunately it is the hq of fifa and they are plastic obsessed. I need to terminate them.

920 Posts
...between melancholy and exuberance....wild and peaceful like a New Orleans funeral....Hardturm-Stadium is history....

Yesterday, after the game against Neuchâtel Xamax, fans of the home team Grasshoppers-Club Zurich celebrate the "Finissage" of their stadium and take their personal souvenirs home - happy deconstruction of a stadium as a social event. Very popular are information boards (eg. toilet signs, commercials), the chairs, the mirrors from the toilets, and of course a piece of the "holy pitch". The Club is giving away thousands of pizza-boxes for this purpose. In return, thanks to the fans, they save some money on the demolition company. ;)

The game was lost 1:2, the team is struggling and currently ranked in the lower half of the table - but on this day, it was not the main issue. After honouring the biggest fan of GC, handicapped Flavio Sturzenegger who nearly hasn't been missing any home game since 30 years, the biggest successes of Grasshoppers in 78 years history on the home ground Hardturm are shown on a big video screen.

photo-report (various sources):

I believe Millwall used to do a variation of this at away grounds - helping keep costs of demolition down, etc. Unfortunately, on a number of occasions that grounds weren't scheduled for redevelopment.

1,500 Posts
Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
The first football league match in the new Letzigrund stadium: a Derby between FC Zürich and Grasshopper-Club (4-0). The first goal after only 40 seconds by Tunisian international Yassine Chickhaoui.

Video of the game:

Video pre-game:
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