A lot of rot has been written about what it's like to go to the Nou
Camp. People expect 100,000 screaming Catalans roaring their guts out,
rain or shine, in homage to a team they support like religious fanatics.
The truth is rather different.
For a start, the Catalans are a rather reserved people, well-known in
Spain for their, erm, heightened concern for making money. It takes a lot for
many to release the cathartic juices necessary for the atavistic
emotions required to fulfil the stereotype of expectation that surrounds
On a good day, when the team are playing well, when the goals are
raining in, when the team are making the fans feel that Barça is a
well-oiled, glamorous machine reflecting well on the Catalan national
identity, the atmosphere can be electric in a stadium that really is
But when the team are 1-0 down against a nonentity opponent,
when things are failing to gel, when the whole hysteria that surrounds
the club seems to be ganging up against it, the stadium can be like a
morgue, even three-quarters full.
And then the white handkerchiefs come out, and then the moaning
begins. The relationship between FC Barcelona and its fans is like that
between two histrionic lovers constantly in flux between hitting the
rocks or sailing to the horizon.
Not that you'll see too much negativity these days. Having ended a six-year trophy drought with a sensational league and
Champions League double in 2006, Barcelona have played some scintillating football in recent seasons. They won all six trophies in 2009 and retained the league title in 2010. The enemies in Spain's capital will always be a danger, but for now the good times are most certainly back
at the Nou Camp.
The easiest way to reach the 98,000-capacity Nou Camp is via Maria Cristina
station on Line 1 of the Metro. Go down Diagonal, turn left into
Avinguda Joan XIII, and Europe's biggest stadium comes into view.
Tickets can normally be bought at the taquilla in the run-up to games,
though getting into the big games requires more than a touch of
wiliness, or a wad of euros in your wallet. For a pre- and post-match
drink go to the Bugui Bar on Diagonal.
Club address Avd. Aristides Maillol, s/n 08028 Barcelona
Telephone (0034) 934 963 600
For regular updates on the crazy world of Spanish football, see our blog La Liga Loca
FourFourTwo.com: News • Features • Interviews • Videos • Forums
FourFourTwo is brought to you by Haymarket Consumer Media & FourFourTwo is part of Haymarket Sport
| International Licensing | © Haymarket Media Group 2010