There’s something about the Estadio de Mestalla that makes going to a match there simply incredible. It’s almost like a theatre performance or an ancient Roman colosseum, its sky-high stands bringing everyone closer to the pitch and creating an atmosphere of sound. When Valencia CF are winning, their fans’ collective cheering reverberates deafeningly around this enclosed space and it feels as though the stands around you are literally shaking. Win, lose, or draw, you’ll always leave the Mestalla feeling very much alive with whichever emotion you’re going through.
A few weeks ago, we attended a match at the Mestalla to shoot photos and film for our next episode of #AwayDays. The pre-match ambience in the stadium’s surroundings is also impressive, since there are many bars in very close proximity to the stadium where home fans habitually go for drinks before the match. This, as well as the numerous stands selling flags, scarves, and the typical Spanish match day snack pipas, made us want to blend in with the valencianistas, forming a part of a fanbase who wave their team’s colours in the wind with endless pride.
The Mestalla is an classic stadium, the sort that when you listen closely enough, you can still hear the chants from the 1982 World Cup infiltrating the streets of the surrounding barrio. Where, when you speak to local fans of the older generations, they will tell you stories about long-time Valencian heroes such as Kempes and Puchades running up and down the pitch.
It’s safe to say that, as a football fan visiting Spain, you’d be a fool to miss out on seeing this stadium.