Elsewhere on this site you can read about the various football teams that call London home, with the main focus being on the teams themselves. What we didn’t go into a huge amount of detail over was where those teams played their games, which is the focus of this page. By only focusing on the teams within the Football League, we were able to narrow it down to 14 teams when it came to the piece on the sides that play their matches within the boundaries of London. There will be more than 14 stadiums, however, owning to the fact that Wembley is very much London based.
We are focussing on the stadiums that are in London itself, rather than within commutable distance. This means that the likes of Meadow Park in Borehamwood won’t feature on our list, even though there will doubtless be some people who think that it is a London stadium in all but name. Unlike with the football teams piece, in which we specifically looked at teams within the Football League, we’re broadening our scope here and looking at all of the football stadia that fall within the confines of London, ignoring those like the home of MK Dons that are a little further afield.
List of Football Stadiums in London
Here is a look at all of the stadiums that have made our list, including when they first opened their doors and the team or teams that they play host to:
|Brentford Community Stadium||2020||Brentford|
|Hayes Lane||1938||Bromley; Cray Wanderers; Crystal Palace Women|
|The Hive Stadium||2013||Barnet; London Bees|
|The Valley||1919||Charlton Athletic|
|Victoria Road||1917||Dagenham & Redbridge; West Ham United Women|
|Brisbane Road||1890s||Leyton Orient; Tottenham Hotspur Women|
|Selhurst Park||1924||Crystal Palace|
|London Stadium||2012||West Ham United|
|Gander Green Lane||1912||Sutton United|
|Tottenham Hotspur Stadium||2019||Tottenham Hotspur|
|Wembley Stadium||2007||England National Football Team|
|Loftus Road||1904||Queens Park Rangers|
|Plough Lane||2020||AFC Wimbledon|
Originally known as the New Den in order to differentiate it from Millwall’s previous home of the Den, the stadium was the first all-seater stadium to be built in England in the wake of the release of the Taylor Report into the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster. It was designed with crowd management in mind, not least of all because of Millwall’s notoriously crowd issues. Boasting a capacity of just over 20,000, the original plan was for it to be able to house as many as 30,000 people before the club opted to wait and see whether there was significantly demand for that.
Brentford Community Stadium
Located in the Brentford area of West London, Brentford Community Stadium opened its doors for the first time in 2020. It was designed to be able to host both football and rugby union matches and has a capacity of a little over 17,000. Despite rumours of Brentford moving to a new stadium for many years, dating back as far as 2002, work on the venue didn’t actually start until the March of 2017. It was opened a little over three years later, with the first game involving a 2-2 draw between the Bees and Oxford United. In the summer of 2022, the entire West Stand was converted to rail-seating in accordance with the safe-standing trial.
Hayes Lane is the home of Bromley, as well as where the Crystal Palace women’s team play their matches. It opened in 1938, with Bromley moving into it straight away. In 1948, the venue hosted its record attendance match, when Bromley took on a Nigeria XI in front of 10,798 people. The original main stand burned down in 1992, being replaced by a smaller one the following year. Interestingly, some of the seats were taken from the London Aquatic Centre to be installed behind one of the goals. The grass was replaced by 3G and a new stand was built in 2017, opening in 2019.
The Hive Stadium
Built on the former site of the Prince Edward Playing Fields in the Borough of Harrow, The Hive Stadium’s official capacity is 6,500. It was originally solely the home of Barnet, but in 2014 the London Bees, a women’s football team, started playing their games here. Despite ground being broken in 2003, the venue didn’t open for another ten years after the construction partners of its intended users, Wealdstone, went into liquidation. Barnet bought the lease when it went up for tender in 2006, planning to use it as their training centre but eventually making it their new home.
During Charlton’s early years, the club’s existence was somewhat nomadic. As a result, the decision to build them a permanent home was taken during a time of moderate success for the team. Due to problems with construction, a group of volunteers helped to finish getting it ready for football matches to be played on it. The name comes from its valley-like appearance, with the team’s first game taking place before any seats or terraces had been installed. It was one of the largest grounds in Britain for many years, boasting a capacity of 75,000, but this was limited to its current capacity in the wake of the Taylor Report.
Known as the Chigwell Construction Stadium at the time of writing due to sponsorship, Victoria Road opened its doors for the first time in 1917 as the home of Dagenham & Redbridge. Nowadays, the team continues to use the ground alongside the West Ham United Women’s team, whilst West Ham’s Under-23s side also play here. With a capacity of less than 7,000, it is fair to say that it isn’t one of the biggest venues inside the confines of London. Whilst it has undergone several modernisations since it first opened, it’s hardly the most developed of football grounds in the capital.
In the 2023-2024 Premier League season, Stamford Bridge was the division’s ninth-largest venue and the eleventh largest in all of England. That is perhaps somewhat surprising for a club the size of Chelsea, who moved into it in 1905 after it had opened 28 years prior for London Athletic Club. It was only when Gus and Joseph Mears bought it with the specific purpose of hosting high-profile football matches at it that it was converted from its previous use as an athletics venue. Back then, it had a capacity of 100,000, meaning only Crystal Palace was larger.
Unsurprisingly, the stadium has undergone several changes over the years, including prior to Chelsea moving into it. It also underwent major changes in 1998, as well as numerous smaller ones since then to keep it at Premier League standard and ensure that the likes of hospitality packages are catered for. That 1998 change saw almost an entirely new stadium built, coming on the Taylor Report. It has not only hosted Chelsea games, but also three FA Cup finals and ten FA Cup semi-finals. In 2013, Stamford Bridge was the venue for the Women’s Champions League final.
When you look into the history of Craven Cottage, there is an amusing piece of information that declares that it opened as a stadium in 1896, but as a cottage more than 100 years earlier. That perhaps offers a glimpse into the somewhat provincial nature of the start to life of the home of Fulham Football Club, which was built by William Craven in 1780. The ground became abandoned and overgrown in the years that followed, requiring major renovations when Fulham wanted to open it as their home ground towards the end of the 19th century, with more than two years’ worth of work taking place on it.
In 1904, London County Council tried to get it closed on safety grounds, but Archibald Leitch was hired to develop it following a court case a year later. Improvements were carried out several times, no least of all when Fulham reached the top-flight for the first time in 1949. Arguably the biggest development was carried out to the Riverside Stand, which was demolished and rebuilt ahead of the 2022-2023 campaign. As well as countless Fulham matches, the ground has also seen the likes of international football being played in it when Northern Ireland and Cyprus played here in 1974 due to the Troubles.
From the moment that Arsenal moved to North London, creating their rivalry with Tottenham Hotspur, the Gunners called Highbury their home. That was an older stadium not fitting the modern world of football, however, so in 1997 the club began to explore the possibility of moving somewhere else. Ground was broken in 2004, with the Emirates opening two years later after around £390 million was spent on construction. It was something of an albatross around Arsenal’s neck for many years, no least because they had had to buy the ground themselves in one of the most expensive areas of London.
For match-going Gunners, it was a decent move, however. The stadium was state-of-the-art when it opened, complete with excellent sightlines and comfortable seating. Sponsorship was sought in order to cover some of the costs, which is why it is known as Emirates Stadium rather than by a more generic name. In 2009, three years after it opened, the stadium underwent a process of ‘Arsenalisation’, during which time it became a ‘visible stronghold of all things Arsenal’. There are murals around the lower concourse that depict 12 of the ‘greatest moments’ in the club’s history.
When the stadium opened in 1989, it was the home of Kingstonian after the sale of their Richmond Road ground. AFC Wimbledon moved in in 2002 after the club’s creation in the wake of the former Wimbledon moving to Milton Keynes, but nowadays it is exclusively used by Chelsea Women and the club’s development squad. The freehold is owned by Kingston Council, but the ground is the property of Chelsea and has been since 2015. The capacity stands at a little under 5,000, having originally been designed to welcome more than 6,000 before modern safety requirements came in.
Originally known as Osborne Road, Brisbane Road is located in the Leyton area of East London and is the home of both Leyton Orient and Tottenham Hotspur Women. Interesting, the exact building of the ground isn’t known, simply being put down in the record books as circa 1890s. It has undergone numerous developments over the years to modernise it, including the construction and alteration of the various stands. It is located close to both the Olympic Park and Hackney Marches, and has been used to host various international matches in both men’s and women’s football.
Another of the London stadiums designed by Archibald Leitch, Selhurst Park was built across two years after a former brickfield site was bought in order to accommodate it. It was officially opened by the Lord Mayor of London in 1924, at which point there was only one stand. Two years later and England played Wales in an international at the stadium, confirming its place as one of the finest venues in London. Floodlights were installed for the first time in 1953, then nine years later they were replaced by better ones and Real Madrid were the first team to play under them.
As you might imagine, the stadium has undergone numerous redevelopments over the years in order to meet the safety requirements of the Football Association. These took place in 1983, 1995 and 2013-2014, all whilst keeping the spirit of what made it such a brilliant ground to play football in in the first place. For fans of TV shows, Selhurst Park is likely to be recognisable as the home of AFC Richmond in Ted Lasso. In 2018, Crystal Palace announced that a multi-million pound redevelopment of the venue was due to take place, though this has yet to happen at the time of writing.
When it comes to controversy, few grounds in the country, let alone the capital, can match London Stadium. Formerly known as Olympic Stadium and the Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, owing to the fact that it was built to house the various Olympic and Paralympic goings on when London played host in 2012. As you can imagine, the stadium’s original design was all about athletics, so it needed to be converted into a football ground in the wake of the Olympics. The reason it’s so controversial is the manner in which it ended up as the home ground of West Ham.
There were several teams that were keen to move into the venue, but West Ham won the tender. Controversy was added on account of the fact that it wasn’t West Ham that ended up paying for the converting of it to become a football stadium, which many believed wasn’t fair. Not only that, but there were plenty of people who believed that it should be used as a legacy project in the wake of the Olympics, using it for those that might wish to get into athletics after seeing the Olympics take place there, but that wasn’t to be an now it is the home of West Ham United.
Gander Green Lane
At the time of writing, Gander Green Lane is known as the VBS Community Stadium officially. It is the home ground of Sutton United and has been since it opened in 1912. It has played host to England C games over the years and was briefly the home of AFC Wimbledon when the original club relocated to Milton Keynes. For a time, it was used to host athletics. When Sutton United were promoted to the Football League, it had to undergo numerous changes in order to bring it up to scratch for the EFL’s rules. Even so, the record attendance occurred in 2021 when 3,905 people turned up to watch Sutton defeat Port Vale 4-3.
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Tottenham Hotspur had called White Hart Lane their home for most of the club’s existence, but a decision was taken to move to a new ground on the same site. The multi-purpose venue was built in the wake of the demolition of White Hart Lane, during which time Tottenham played their home matches at Wembley Stadium. The new venue was the centrepiece of the Northumberland Development Project, which was designed to be a catalyst for the regeneration of Tottenham over the following 20 years. The actual designed was revised several times before construction began in 2016.
One of the chief features of the venue is the fact that it boasts the world’s first dividing, retractable football pitch, revealing a synthetic turf underneath that can be used for the likes of NFL games and concerts. The intention was to sell naming rights to it, with Tottenham Hotspur Stadium only a temporary name, but it hasn’t been renamed at the time of writing. Some people refer to it as New White Hart Lane, on account of the fact that it is built on the same site as the original ground. One of the standout aspects is the South Stand, which is the biggest single-tier stand in the country.
Another football ground built on the site of the previous one is Wembley, which replaced the old Wembley when it was constructed between 2003 and 2007. Designed by architects Foster + Partners and HOK Sport, which is now Populous, it is one of the most expensive stadia ever built. That is on account of the fact that it cost £798 million in 2007. The result is the largest roof covered seating capacity anywhere in the world, with the bowl design allowing for 90,000 people to attend matches here. Those that do are not all that impressed with its concrete, hollow interior, however.
The FA took control of the new stadium on the ninth of March 2007, with the first major match hosted being that year’s FA Cup final. With more than 2,500 toilets, a circumference of one kilometre and 56 kilometres of power cables, it is fair to say that Wembley is an impressive venue to host anything. Obviously football is the major event that takes place here, being the home of the England national side in addition to the FA Cup semi-finals and final, but there have been numerous other events that have taken place here over the years, including concerts from world-renowned musicians.
Based in the White City area of London, Loftus Road opened its doors for the first time in 1904 as the home of Shepherd’s Bush FC. It is best known as being where Queens Park Rangers play their games, which has been the case permanently since 1963. As you might imagine, the ground has undergone several renovations over the years to ensure it meets the correct safety standards as well as to modernise it. The record attendance occurred in 1999 when 35,353 people turned up to watch QPR play Manchester City. Nowadays, the capacity is just shy of 19,000.
Owing to sponsorship, this ground is officially known as the Cherry Red Records Stadium at the time of writing. Having bounced around numerous grounds in London in the wake of Wimbledon’s departure for Milton Keynes, AFC Wimbledon moved into the ground in 2020. Two years later and a ground-share with London Broncos began, though most people will still only think of it as Wimbledon’s home. The phoenix club moved in as soon as it opened, with the first game played here being a 2-2 draw between the home side and Doncaster Rovers.