|Clubs||Manchester United FC|
|Inauguration||19/02/1910 (Manchester United - Liverpool FC, 3-4)|
|Renovations||1941, 1946-1949, 1951, 1957, 1973, 1995-2000, 2006|
|Recod attendance||76,962 (Wolverhampton Wanderers - Grimsby Town, FA Cup, 25/03/1939)|
|Design||Archibald Leitch (1909)|
|Address||Sir Matt Busby Way, Old Trafford, Manchester|
Old Trafford – stadium description
“It is the most remarkable arena I have ever seen. As a football ground it is unrivalled in the world. It is an honour to Manchester.” is what The Sporting Chronicle wrote about Old Trafford upon opening in February of 1910. Quite a welcome, but the stadium proved worthy of its reputation over the years.
Before moving to Old Trafford, the great Man United began as Newton Heath and only earned its current name after the old club dissolved in early 20th century. By 1909, just 7 years into its operation as United, owner of local brewery and chairman of the club, John Henry Davies, pumped £90,000 into construction of a brand new stadium with open-air embankments on three sides and a covered main grandstand in the south.
Old Trafford's initial form was created by perhaps the greatest name in British football architecture, Archibald Leitch. This famous Scotsman also worked on Hampden Park, Ibrox and White Hart Lane, to name just a few from his impressive portfolio. For United it was relocation from Bank Street (Clayton) to western Manchester for the first time. The opening game was played against Liverpool FC on February 19, 1910. The Red Devils lost 3:4.
In 1911 and 1915 the stadium saw its first FA Cup finals and in 1920 it set the attendance record for a league game, when 70,504 people watched the tie against Aston Villa. All-time record for Old Trafford was set on March 25, 1939, when 76,962 people were drawn to the FA Cup semifinal between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Grimsby Town.
During World War II, on March 11, 1941, the field and stands were seriously damaged by Luftwaffe bombing. The team had to use Manchester City's Maine Road between 1946 and 1949. When finally reopened on August 24, 1949, Old Trafford again saw United lose, this time 0:3 to Bolton Wanderers.
In the following years roof was erected above remaining sides of the stadium but it included supports within the stands, which obstructed the view to many people. In mid-1960s expansion of the stands began, first replacing the north and east stands. With terracing in front and seating behind it, this was enough to host the World Cup in 1966.
For the next 30 years a series of upgrades took place, not all as fortunate as one would expect. In 1970s it became the first stadium to get perimeter fencing to protect from crowd invasion, the kind of protection that was later removed from all British stadia. Throughout the 70s and 80s the stadium held under 60,000 people but following the Hillsborough disaster and conversion to all-seater mode, it fell to just 44,000. With brand new Stretford End built in 1994 and north stand in 1996, the stadium may have been of decent quality and sufficient to hold Euro 1996, but capacity of 56,000 was still below actual demand.
Despite varying height of all stands, Old Trafford's inner edge of the roof has remarkably remained at almost the same level for years. This incline towards the field became a signature feature of the stadium, making the north stand's third tier barely visible to some fans inside as the roof prevents parts of the crowd to see others.
The last major expansion so far took place in 2005-06, when two northern corners were filled with brand new facilities. Called the quadrants, brand new towers with 6 floors and tall cantilevered roof structure make for a more unified silhuette, while also expanding floor space and capacity to around 75,000 seats. While not enough to beat the stadium's all-time record, this safely made Manchester United the dominant British team in terms of crowds.
Nicknamed The Theatre of Dreams, the stadium was first called that by Sir Bobby Charlton.
How Old Trafford compares to other Premier League stadiums?
England: Women's Manchester derbies to be staged at Premier League stadiums
Women's football in England is becoming increasingly popular. Average attendances in the past Women's Super League season were significantly higher than in previous years, and it doesn't stop there, because the league wants to keep growing. In 2023/24, the Manchester derbies will again be played at venues where Premier League players compete on a daily basis.
England: Which Premier League 2022/23 stadium is the cleanest, and where is the dirtiest?
Several venues of the popular top six teams’ have been selected for the top five cleanest stadiums, so one representative from the Premier League's biggest clubs is missing among them. Which one? And which stadiums are filthy in England?
England: Old Trafford expands safe standing zones ahead of season
Manchester United were one of five Premier League clubs to take part in a pilot programme to reintroduce standing areas to English stadiums from 2022. Following successful safety trials, standing sections will be expanded from the new season at the 'Theatre of Dreams'.
Manchester: Old Trafford will be demolished?!
For the past two decades, the discussion whether and how to expand the popular "The Theatre of Dreams" has returned like a boomerang. The topic has become a soap opera, as none of the proposed options for expanding the facility have been decided upon.
England: Stadium rises will affect Premier League clubs
The value of almost all 20 stadiums owned by teams playing in the Premier League has recently increased. As a result, clubs will face multi-million pound tax increases involving their infrastructure.
United Kingdom: Is football coming home at the Euros?
At a time when most of the chatter is about the World Cup, plans for the next major football events are being clarified. Great Britain and Ireland announced their joint candidacy for hosting Euro 2028 some time ago. A shortlist of stadiums being considered by the federations was also recently announced.
England: Old Trafford Renovations. What's Going On?
In 2022, Manchester United F.C. announced plans to renovate Old Trafford, but what is likely to take place at the Theatre of Dreams? Read on for more.
England: Meet the 2022/23 Premier League stadiums!
Much to the delight of fans, the new English Premier League season will kick off on Friday, August 5. On this occasion, we would like to introduce you to the stadiums where the footballers of the world's best league will soon be playing. Get your English tea in hand and let's get started!
England: More standing areas in stadiums next season?!
All Premier League and Championship clubs will be eligible to apply to operate licensed safe standing areas starting from the next season, the English government has recently announced. This marks the departure from a 30-year-old rule requiring seated-only stadiums.
England: (New) Old Trafford? Consultants will examine the options
Upgrading an iconic venue or building a brand new stadium to accommodate 90,000 fans? The owners of Manchester United are facing one of the most important decisions in the club's history. An international team of experienced consultants is there to help them.
England: Controversy over women's EURO 2022 stadiums
The UEFA European Women's Championship will kick off in just over two months' time, with England hosting the tournament for the second time in its history. Despite the fact that the grand final will take place at Wembley, the stadiums approved for the tournament, according to many, are… too small.
Manchester: Will Man Utd knock down Old Trafford?
Old Trafford has been Manchester United's home ground for 110 years now, a big part of the mammoth club's storied history. It is the largest club football stadium and the second-largest general football stadium after Wembley in the United Kingdom.
England: Old Trafford to grow to 80,000?
According to many United fans, the stadium needs significant changes. It is not only about increasing the number of seats available, but also about improving the comfort of watching matches.
England: Safe standing trials in Premier League and Championship
There has been talk for some time about introducing safe standing in the two highest leagues in the country. In 2019, the government assured about the imminent change of the regulations, but these were not introduced until 2 years later.
Manchester: “Over £100m has been invested in the stadium”
Since 2005, Manchester United has invested over £100 million in multiple upgrades across Old Trafford, according to COO Collette Roche. She also updated fans about possible expansion.
European Super League: What could change stadium-wise?
Earthquake of historic proportions or a failed attempt at secession? Europe’s top club are attempting to flee UEFA’s supervision and no longer share revenue from international games. Their gain could come at a massive price for others.
United Kingdom: Will they bring football home in 2030 again?
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has recently supported the potential candidacy of the UK and Ireland for the FIFA 2030 World Cup. The formal process for a prospective five-association bid will be opened in 2022.
COVID-19 crisis: English supporters to return in October?
The government is preparing to reopen sports stadiums across the UK. While first trial events will take place in just 2 weeks, all stadiums could be open again only from October onwards.
Manchester: United secure safe standing section for Old Trafford
Today the club have informed that their application to install 1,500 safe standing places has been approved by the council. The section should be implemented before fans return to Old Trafford.
Manchester: United apply for safe standing section
Old Trafford is likely to be the third Premier League stadium to have a safe standing section, perhaps before the season ends. Daily Mail reports that application has already been filed weeks ago.