England has been the home to world class football since ages.Football initially is believed to started in England since 18th century and with the formation of English Football League in 1888, it was officially introduced as a professional sport in Britain. Since then people have cherished football, going to the stadiums and enjoying their favorite clubs in the pitch. England have been home to many historic stadiums many of which now ceases to exist in the hands of time.
The likes of Highbury and Maine Road have consigned to history but there are still some historic stadiums which exist till now and have been a witness to the evolution of this beautiful game. Let us take a look at some of the oldest football stadiums in the English league.
Bramall Lane – Sheffield United
Bramall Lane the home to Sheffield United is a 32,000 capacity stadium which is believed to be not only the oldest stadium in England but also in the world. Football was first played here in 1862 and it had been in constant use since then, hosting one the first floodlit games in England as well. Home to Sheffield United since 1899, the ground was named after the Bramall family, who were prominent local landowners. Although the Blades have fallen on relatively hard times of late, Bramall Lane is still considered to be a cauldron where away teams are rarely given an easy ride.
Field Mill – Mansfield Town
Commonly known as One Call Stadium, Mansfield Town is believed have hosted football first in 1861. It has also been used as a cricket stadium and a venue for greyhound racing and rugby league. The Stadium has been the official home of Mansfield town since 1919 and the club has been a member of the English football League since 1931. Though the club had not seen much fortune currently sitting in the league 2 of English division, but their stadium is definitely a point of pride.
Deepdale – Preston North End
Preston North End is one of the great old clubs in Northwest football. The founding members of the Football League, they were the first team to win the League and Cup titles. And their land – Deepdale – is steeped in history. It hosted football for the first time in 1878 and since then it has also become the home of the city’s cricket and rugby teams as well. Although Preston hasn’t seen much glory since those early days, 1966 World Cup winners Bobby Moore and Nobby Styles ran the club through the 1970s. Another reflection of Deepdale’s place in the game is that it housed the National Football Museum from 2001 to 2010.
Stamford Bridge – Chelsea
Located in one of London’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, Stamford Bridge has been the home of Chelsea since 1905. However, it has been hosting football since 1877. Today, the stadium is familiar the world over, with a capacity of just over 41,000. It is the eighth largest stadium in Premier League. However, this was not always the case. Until the mid-1990s, Stamford Bridge was considered a dilapidated and inhospitable venue for football. And with fans averaging often around 15,000 at the time, a lot has changed in a short period for both Chelsea and Stamford Bridge.
St James’ Park – Newcastle United
Home to The Toon since 1892, St James’ Park stands figuratively and physically as a castle overlooking Newcastle. With a capacity of 52405, it is simply the focal point of an entire city and the place of some of the most enthusiastic support in the country. Unsurprisingly, St James’ Park has received international recognition over the years – it has hosted the England international, Olympic football and even the Rugby World Cup matches.