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Olympiacos (Karaiskakis Stadium)

Karaiskakis Stadium

Capacity: 33,334
Address: Karaoli Dimitriou & Sofianopoulou, Piraeus 185 47, Greece
Telephone: +30 21 0480 0901
StadiumTours: No
Pitch Size: 105 x 68 metres
Pitch Type: Natural grass
Club Nickname: Thrylos
Year Ground Opened: 1896
Undersoil Heating: No
Shirt Sponsors: Stoiximan
Home Kit: Red and White
Away Kit: White and Blue
Third Kit: Grey and Orange


                    
                    

Officially named the Georgios Karaiskakis Stadium after national hero and military commander Georgios Karaiskakis, the ground is the largest football-specific stadium in the whole of Greece, boasting a capacity of 33,334.

Like many modern stadia, the ground features a bowl-like design, giving the facility a sense of style as more and more clubs choose to move away from the more traditional four-stand approach.

Arguably the most unique and iconic aspect of the ground is its famous roof, which is characterised by an astonishing grid-like effect, accented by several red metal structures.

It has been awarded with four-star status by UEFA, meaning that it could one day be the hosting venue of a Europa League final.

Those four stars are well-deserved too, with features such as a shopping mall and club museum supporting the aforementioned roof design.

Rather impressively, due to the innovative design of the site, the ground has the ability to completely empty its tribunes within the space of seven minutes – and we all know just how long this can take in other stadiums.

Three sides of the stadium consist of single-tiered stands, including the North stand, which is often where the majority of the club’s most passionate fans reside. You will also find the number seven etched into the seats in this section in memory of the tragic Karaiskakis Stadium Disaster.

The West stand features 40 VIP lounges and suites that have a capacity of 472 and is the main section of the ground.

Without a doubt, the Karaiskakis Stadium is a state-of-the-art facility, and is even the chosen home of the Greek national team, beating out rival grounds such as the Athens Olympic Stadium.

In the vast majority of cases, travelling supporters will be sat in blocks 26 and 27 of the ground, both of which are located within the south-west corner of the site.

Conveniently, the entrance to this section of the stadium is located nearby the Faliro Metro Station, which is where most away fans will arrive.

There are, of course, anomalies, but most of the time, the ground and the city of Piraeus in which it is located are hostile and is not safe for away supporters so remain vigilant at all times.

 

The city of Piraeus is not a welcoming city to away fans, particularly on matchday. In fact, it has a reputation in recent years of violent home supporters, and therefore, the club have made coach travel, to and from the stadium, mandatory.

As such, you will spend the majority of your time in the capital city of Athens, and it is here that you should look to find pubs for some pre-game drinks.

Athens is far more welcoming and most pubs and bars will be good options, but some standouts include the Athens Sports Bar and the James Joyce Pub.

A groundbreaking development at the ground was completed very recently, with the club inaugurating their brand new ‘American Corner’ of the site.

It was an initiative put forward by the US Embassy and features easy access to the Internet for cultural and educational events which will be hosted in the facility.

The main goal of the partnership between the city of Piraeus and the Embassy is an increase in cultural contribution to society.

It was officially unveiled via a friendly match between Olympiacos veterans and celebrities of both Greek and American citizenship.

 

Originally constructed for the 1896 Athens Olympic Games, work on the site began in 1895 and lasted approximately one year.

Renovations have been few and far between at the stadium, with the first set of improvements occurring in 1964, although these were not all that significant.

Then, in 2004, the ground was completely rebuilt into a sleek, modern all-seater competition ahead of the 2004 Summer Olympic Games.

Not only was the site demolished and built from the foundations once more, but it was also rotated and now faces a completely different direction from what it once did.

Despite the Herculean overhaul, these improvements took just 14 months to be completed.

Olympiacos’ original lease on the facility ended in 1998, but, in 2003, that was renewed, this time granting the club access to the stadium on a 49-year deal, ending in 2052.

It is now the largest football-specific stadium in the whole of Greece and has set several records to further etch its name into the history books of the sport.

It hosted the first-ever European football final in the country – a Cup Winners’ Cup encounter between juggernauts Real Madrid and Chelsea.

However, tragedy has also struck the ground, in the form of an incident known as the Karaiskakis Stadium Disaster.

The accident occurred after fans of Olympiacos rushed out of the stadium via Gate 7 to celebrate a 6-0 victory over AEK Athens, and led to the deaths of 21 fans. It is the worst football-related disaster in the history of the country.

 

Given that Olympiacos have made coach travel to and from the Karaiskakis Stadium mandatory in European fixtures, most of which depart from Athens, it is the capital city of Greece that you will likely want to head to.

Travel by plane

Easily the best option, travelling by plane is the quickest and most straightforward method available to you. Greece is a very popular tourist destination for UK citizens and as such, the vast majority of airports will fly to Athens.

Athens International Airport, Eleftherios Venizelos, is your best bet in this regard, from which you will want to follow your club’s outlined coach travel plans to ensure safe arrival at the ground.

While the plane is likely to be your best bet, you also have the option of travelling by public transport to Athens. This, however, will require a 2-day journey, with plenty of changes between services such as the Eurostar and local buses in the several countries which you will pass through.

In truth, travelling by plane is far easier, likely cheaper and remains our recommended option if making the trip to the Karaiskakis Stadium.

Ticket prices of course vary depending on a variety of factors, including the competition which Olympiacos are playing and who they are competing against.

However, as a general rule of thumb, you can expect to pay approximately €40 for an adult ticket, while a child’s ticket will likely be close to €10.

If, however, they are playing against European giants in the Champions League, or their fierce rivals Panathinaikos, then these prices can be far higher. It is always best to check the club’s official website to find exact prices.

Olympiacos’ local rivals are fellow Athens-based side Panathinaikos.

These two clubs are the two most successful in the history of Greek football, and given their extreme proximity, often produce fierce encounters.

In fact, as recently as 2019 a match between the pair had to be abandoned due to fans clashing ahead of kick-off.

In terms of accessible seats for disabled supporters, there are a total of 50 provided in the ground, all of which are located within the West Stand.

Olympiacos also provide an accessible entrance to the stadium itself, with wheelchair users guided towards a separate gate which features a slope rather than steps.

This slope ends at the wheelchair-accessible viewing area and is also located near accessible toilets.

Karaiskakis Stadium’s record attendance was set all the way back in 1969, against Olympiacos’ rivals AEK Athens, when a crowd of 45,445 was in attendance for the derby game on April 7.

Despite having the largest football-specific stadium in the country, Olympiacos’ average attendance of 23, 430 is only the second-highest, narrowly losing out to AEK Athens who boast a respective figure of 25,000.

It appears as though Olympiacos are not currently providing any stadium tours at the ground. However, there is the option of visiting the club’s on-site museum.

Museum opening hours:

  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday to Thursday: 10.00am – 6.00pm
  • Friday: 10.00am – 10.00pm
  • Saturday and Sundays: 11.00am – 3.00pm

As always, be sure to check the club’s official site as times are subject to change.

Updated 30th April 2024
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