Nigerian clubs can learn from how Real Madrid financed the new Santiago Bernabeu stadium

Nigerian clubs can learn from how Real Madrid financed the new Santiago Bernabeu stadium

There is a lesson or two Nigerian clubs and indeed Nigerian governments at the national and state levels can learn from the mix of finance used by the biggest football club in the world to build stadia of world and awe-inspiring.

Undeniably, Real Madrid CF is the biggest football club in the world of football and they didn’t get there by dreaming as the account below describes.

Los Blancos have accumulated so much success over the years that they can boast 68 domestic trophies in Spain, 21 European trophies, and a record seven club world championships for themselves.

Apart from success in terms of trophies, they are the most valuable part of the football club in the world with the team worth around $5.1 billion.

It is not surprising that Florentino Perez, the President of the club can be confident of getting any player they are interested in, because they can boast of trophies and also a lot of financial value.

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In 2017, the Club planned a renovation of its 75-year-old stadium, the Santiago Bernabeu, but the financing was slow to come together.

Construction eventually began in 2019, but the COVID-19 pandemic occurred and the club postponed the inauguration of the iconic stadium until the 2023-24 season.

Brief History of Santiago Bernabeu

Santiago Bernabeu is the second largest stadium in Spain after Camp Nou, the home ground of FC Barcelona, ​​with a current seating capacity of 81,044.

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The stadium is named after the former player and legendary President of Real Madrid, Santiago Bernabeu, who was president of the club between 1943 – 1978.

It is one of the most famous football venues in the world. The stadium has hosted the final of the European Cup/UEFA Champions League four times (1957, 1969, 1980, 2010).

The stadium also hosted the second leg of the 2018 Copa Libertadores Finals, making the Santiago Bernabéu the first (and only) stadium to host the continent’s two most important continental finals (UEFA Champions League and Copa Libertadores ).

The final matches of the 1964 European Nations’ Cup and the 1982 FIFA World Cup were also held at the Bernabéu, making it the first stadium in Europe to host a UEFA Euro final and a FIFA World Cup final.

The stadium was inaugurated on 14 December 1947 with a match between Real Madrid and the Portuguese side, Os Belenenses.

The New Bernabeu: Not Your Regular Stadium

The new Bernabeu stadium has a high form of uniqueness. The construction work will cost about 700 million dollars.

The stadium has been designed to be used for football, but also for the women’s team and basketball.

The arena is open for events 300 days a year, from trade shows and exhibitions to concerts and sports events, with social and hospitality locations.

There will also be a skywalk around the stadium, with some of the biggest restaurateurs in Spain invited to make proposals for spaces.

The new VIP zones also have more than 25,000 square meters to put Real Madrid at the forefront of the sector.

To see the success of the events, the roof of the stadium is essential to prevent the weather from affecting the events.

An important addendum is a retractable turf, which means that Real Madrid no longer have to abandon events to protect the playing field.

It also expands the capacity of the stadium to 100,000 spectators for music concerts or other events.

Finance the latest renovation

The renovation of the stadium is expected to make the venue one of the most modern stadiums in the world and is expected to cost around $700 million more.

About 4,000 seats will be added to the already 81,000 seat venue. The club museum will be expanded, and premium shopping will be added to the Concourse.

Financial lessons for Nigerian clubs

  • Local Nigerian clubs will need crossborder financing if local financing is difficult to obtain. Real Madrid’s partnership deals with Legends Hospitality and Sixth Street, a US-based investment firm with $60 billion in assets under management giving Real Madrid $380 million up front and creating a new company where Legends and Sixth Street can help with non-football related management. events and experiences in the soon-to-be renovated stadium – each entity is reported to have a share of the income generated by the new company.

As part of the deal, the Legends also reportedly guaranteed Real Madrid more than $400 million a year in return for their share of the stadium revenue.

That’s $250 million more than the club makes annually from stadium operations now, and if the $400 million in annual revenue isn’t made, the Legends will reportedly pay the difference.

  • Aside from the up-front cash from the partnership deals, Real Madrid also has the ability to generate more revenue in the long run. Their stadium is now available 365 days a year further diversifying their revenue streams.
  • Real Madrid President Florentino Pérez even announced the possibility of hosting a Super Bowl at the stadium.


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