Ranking the A-League Men home grounds for the 2021/22 season

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Every club and their fans like to argue that their home ground is the best but who’s right and who’s caught up in their own illusion? Let’s break all 11 home grounds down and find out.

  1. Wellington Phoenix (WIN Stadium)

Although positioned quite well at the lower end of the Wollongong CBD, the fact that this  stadium is only a stop gap for the Phoenix because of coronavirus restrictions that have forced them to remain in Australia means it comes in at the base of our list.

A solid home away from home but it is nothing compared to a roaring Sky Stadium in Wellington. 

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  1. Western United (GMHBA Stadium & Mars Stadium)

Being a newcomer to the A-League Men, it is understandable for Western United that they are still working towards a proper home ground. 

The planning and development of Wyndham City Stadium began earlier this year as Western United’s parent company offered tenders for the stadium’s construction. 

Until this purpose built precinct is available through, Western United currently play at two oval stadiums: GMHBA and Mars in Geelong and Ballarat respectively.

Stadiums like these are great for the other footballing code but tend to be detrimental to traditional football when having the crowd positioned so far away from the touch lines. 

For this reason and the split between the two stadiums, Western United are unfortunately 10th in our rankings. 

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  1. Brisbane Roar (Moreton Daily Stadium)

Having down-graded from the colosseum that is Suncorp Stadium directly in the heart of Brisbane to Moreton Daily at the beginning of last season in hopes of a greater game day atmosphere, moving from 52,000 seats to 11,500 seats. 

This plan may have been ill-fated however, with Moreton Daily stadium lying approximately 45 minutes from the Brisbane CBD and with a lack of real public transport close to the stadium many locals now dub the team the ‘Redcliffe Roar’ because of their abstract positioning arguably turning more people away from the Roar and their home games. 

The first ‘real’ home ground on this list deserves its place near the bottom in most locals’ eyes because it took their team away from home.

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  1. Sydney FC (Leichhardt Oval and Netstrata Jubilee Stadium)

While boasting arguably one of the best home grounds normally in Allianz Stadium, due to refurbishments Sydney must now split their home games between Leichhardt Oval and Netstrata Jubilee Stadium. 

Both grounds can hold a touch over 20,000 fans and with Netstratata having recently installed a 98 square-metre video screen on the stadium’s eastern hill, Sydney’s home grounds have proven a solid venues in the short term.  

  1. Macarthur FC (Campbelltown Stadium)

With a capacity of 17,500 people and sitting in the Macarthur area west of Sydney, Campbelltown Stadium is an ideal ground for Macarthur FC to set up as their home base. 

The reason it features so low on this list is its surface issues to start the season. 

The groundskeepers must have thought they had summer off once the NRL and Wests Tigers had finished their season because Macarhur’s round one fixture was relocated because the pitch was deemed unsafe and unsuitable for play. 

Let’s hope the grounds team can step up and deliver a pitch worthy of hosting A-League Men games as if it weren’tt for this hiccup to start the season, Campbelltown may have ranked higher. 

6. Newcastle Jets (McDonald Jones Stadium)

After receiving an upgrade before the 2015 Asian Cup and with a capacity of 30,000 people, McDonald Jones Stadium is now one of the premier rectangular stadiums in the nation. 

This is without mentioning the die-hard Jets fans who will find a spot on the hill rain hail or shine to cheer on their club. 

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  1. Central Coast Mariners (Central Coast Stadium)

Arguably one of the most picturesque home grounds in the A-League Men, Central Coast Stadium could easily draw comparisons to Stoke City’s Bet365 Stadium based purely on its wind factor alone. 

Comfortably seating 20,000 fans amongst its parallel grandstands, the stadium is a great place to play football with its scoreboard being shadowed by palm trees that look out onto the view of the water in Gosford. 

The stadium has received numerous upgrades in recent years including a new larger video screen, upgraded change room facilities for players, new seating and LED floodlighting, making it one of Australia’s best purpose built football stadiums. 

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  1. Perth Glory (HBF Park)

Western Australia’s premier rectangular stadium, HBF Park has become a benchmark for what Australian football stadiums should be.

The most recent redevelopment of the stadium was completed in March 2013 and included the construction of the new two-tiered undercover Eastern Grandstand, the Southern Grandstand, improved corporate facilities, new lighting and two large video screens. 

An area dubbed ‘The Shed’ has been retained as the only standing-room area and creates a lively local game day atmosphere, with seating installed on the terracing in front of it, and the stadium now having a capacity of 20,500.

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  1. Adelaide United (Coopers Stadium) 

One of the few A-League mEN grounds used exclusively for football matches, Coopers Stadium stands proud as a paradise for football purists. 

The stadium features a terraced grandstand on every side of the pitch and puts fans right in the thick of the action with only a few metres between the pitch and front row seats. 

With a capacity of around 20,000, Coopers is equal to many of the stadiums it ranks above on this list with its pure-bred football purpose and its history being ingrained with that of Adelaide United edging it into the top three of our list. 

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  1. Western Sydney Wanderers (CommBank Stadium)

The newest stadium on the list opened in 2019 and CommBank cost an estimated $300 million to develop.

This financial outlay has resulted in the steepest stands of any stadium of its type in Australia, bringing fans closer to the action as well as a roof that covers every seat in the house meaning spectators never need fear the elements on match-day. 

The stadium boasts 30,000 seats and a free-standing section behind one of the goals, allowing fans to stand during football matches; the first all-seater stadium to implement this in Australia.

Being so modern it was hard to put Commbank Stadium second on this list but undoubtedly the Western Sydney fans will create an unwavering culture here in the years to come. 

The Wanderers have found themselves a gem of a home ground to enjoy with their fans for the foreseeable future. 

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  1. Melbourne City & Melbourne Victory (AAMI Park)

With Melbourne being arguably the football capital of Australia there was never much doubt that AAMI Park would rank highly on this list. 

The 30,000 seats on offer plus the tightly compressed nature of the stadium make for a game-day experience unlike any other in the country. 

Sitting in Melbourne’s succinct sporting complex and with the MCG footbridge that connects AAMI Park to the other side of the train lines, the stadium is purpose built for big game days.

On derby days the atmosphere is electric and without a doubt the best in Australia in terms of football.

The egg shell design of the stadium’s exterior adds a character not seen elsewhere in the country’s stadium landscape.

AAMI Park has earned its spot as the best footballing ground in Australia and seems immovable at this point in time.

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Feature Image Credit: Breanna Redhead

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Bill Hedley
Bill Hedley
Journalism under graduate at the University of Queensland. I have been a die-hard football player and fan for the past 16 years and am now a passionate multimedia Journalist, covering Brisbane Roar for the 2021/22 A-League season.

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