On the Road with...Chelsea: Barcelona get ready to embrace a new camp

28 April 2009 11:02
Sportsmail Online's series titled 'On The Road With' brings you thebehind-the-scenes accounts of following British teams on their Europeanadventures this season. Today's instalment comes from Neil Ashton(right) travelling to Barcelona with Chelsea as they prepare to do battle at the daunting Nou Camp in their Champions League semi-final first leg.

The Nou Camp is one of the most iconic stadiums in world football, a giant breakfast bowl on the outskirts of Barcelona that has been home to one of Europe's most famous clubs for nearly 50 years.

It is a sporting cathedral, in much the same way as Old Trafford, home to Spain's second most successful football club with 18 La Liga titles and two Champions League wins (in 1992 and 2006).

The legendary Nou Camp stadium is set for a £175m makeover.

This evening, Chelsea's supporters will fill a tiny section of the 98,000 capacity stadium, high up in the gods for the first leg of the Champions League semi-final, most of them unaware that this is the last time they will visit the Nou Camp in its present form.

Later this year nearly half a century of history will be rewritten when British architect Sir Norman Foster and his team begin work on a £175m makeover for one of the game's greatest grounds.

They hope to increase the capacity still further, making room for another 8,000 seats, an ambitious project that could propel Barcelona from their position as the third richest club in world football, with an income of £309m, ahead of Manchester United (2nd) and their great rivals Real Madrid (1st).

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Source: Daily_Mail

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