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USL Venues Featured in FourFourTwo List

By Staff, 03/17/17, 5:19PM EDT


Cincinnati, Charleston praised in Best 20 Stadiums countdown

Photo courtesy FC Cincinnati

The oldest soccer-specific stadium in the United States, and one of the newest to the USL, were both named this week in’s countdown of the Best 20 Stadiums for Soccer countdown, with the Charleston Battery’s MUSC Health Stadium and FC Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium both earning berths on the countdown.

Nippert Stadium, which welcomed an average of more than 17,000 fans in FCC’s inaugural USL regular season, clocked in at No. 20 on the list. The massive remodeling to make the historic college venue, which continued this offseason to widen the venue’s field, factored into FourFourTwo’s assessment, with the atmosphere created in The Bailey by supporters groups like The Pride and Die Innenstadt also earning praise.

Photo courtesy FC Cincinnati

MUSC Health Stadium, which when it opened in April, 1999 was the first soccer-specific stadium in the United States, sits one place higher. The historic venue, which also includes the must-see Three Lions Club within its facility, has long been one of the must-visit venues for serious American soccer fans. Recent upgrades, like the 3,000 square-foot video board installed prior to last season, have added to the atmosphere as the Battery enter their 25th season this year.

Photo courtesy Kim Morgan Gregory / Charleston Battery

Two venues that will play host to USL games this season sat as the top two venues on the list, with the Portland Timbers’ Providence Park sitting at No. 1 and Orlando City SC’s Orlando City Stadium arriving at No. 2. Former Portland Timbers 2 home venue Merlo Field also cracked the rankings, as did Red Bull Arena, the former home of the New York Red Bulls II and venue for the 2016 USL Cup Final.

The newest addition to the USL’s list of soccer-specific stadiums also received an honorable mention, with Rio Grande Valley FC’s H-E-B Park named among the top small venues in the country ahead of its official opening next Wednesday night when the Toros host Liga MX’s C.F. Monterrey.

The Pittsburgh Riverhounds’ Highmark Stadium, with its intimate atmosphere and stunning views of downtown Pittsburgh across the Monongahela River, also earned praise as it gets ready to welcome fans for its fifth season. 

Photo courtesy Matthew Kruth / Pittsburgh Riverhounds

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