An astonishing 91,533 people crammed into the legendary Camp Nou to watch Barcelona’s women’s team obliterate old rivals Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Although confirmed, it’s believed to be the largest attendance for a club football game of either gender in 2022 so far, and it is certainly the biggest crowd ever at a women’s match – beating the 90,195 that attended the World Cup final in California back in 1999.
Before kick off, supporters held up red, yellow and blue banners – the colours of the Catalonia district – in a clear message to the nationalist Madrid, and that must have spurred on the Barca players in their romp to a 5-2 victory on the night and 8-3 on aggregate.
— FC Barcelona Femení (@FCBfemeni) March 30, 2022
The Barcelona captain and Ballon d’Or winner, Alexia Putellas, hopes the evening will prove to be a milestone moment in the development of women’s football.
“This has been utterly magical,” she said afterwards.
“When the match finished the fans simply didn’t want to go home, there was such a connection between them and us while we celebrated.
“I saw a lot of girls, children with that spark in their eyes. It’s amazing to be part of history.”
And her teammate, Caroline Graham Hansen, confirmed what it’s like to be part of such an occasion.
“This is just too crazy! If we are having fun, people will want to repeat it.”
Barcelona will take their place in the Champions League semi-finals alongside PSG, with Arsenal just one of the remaining last eight teams hoping to join them there.
What is the Biggest Attendance in Football History?
These days, safety provisions are such that we are unlikely to ever be able to replicate the jaw-dropping attendances of yesteryear.
Ironically, Barcelona’s planned revamp of Camp Nou would take its maximum capacity to 105,000 – although there’s only been one 100,000+ attendance in world football since the turn of the new millennium (the International Champions Cup tie between Man Utd and Real Madrid at the Michigan Stadium back in 2014).
Counting down the top three recorded football attendances of all time, two of them came at World Cup 1950 and specifically the Maracana Stadium in Rio De Janeiro. Brazil’s game against Spain (152,722) paving the way for the final against Uruguay, which saw 173,850 tickets sold – although reports put the actual crowd nearer to the 200,000 mark.
As far as club football is concerned, totally accurate figures are hard to come by. But it’s believed that the Scottish Cup final between Celtic and Rangers in 1937 saw 147,365 hardy souls cram into Hampden Park….with reports suggesting as many as 30,000 more were locked out of the stadium with every spare space taken.
As far as English football goes, it’s believed that the 1923 FA Cup final between Bolton and West Ham at Wembley takes the top spot. Officially, the attendance was 126,047, although those at the game have claimed that the actual figure was much higher than that with supporters finding a myriad of ways to get into the stadium.