Nea Smyrni Stadium is the home ground of Greek Superleague side Panionios G.S.S. First opened in 1939, today’s capacity of 11,700 has been achieved by two renovations in 2001 and 2003 with the conversion to full seating occurring in 1998 when the home side participated in the UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.
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Nea Smyrni Stadium first opened in 1939, and today has a capacity of 11,700 after undergoing numerous renovations. Before conversion to all-seating in the 1990s, the stadium’s capacity peaked at around 20,000 with a 1974 match between Panionios FC and Panathinaikos FC which was attended by 20,950 supporters.
Named after the suburb of Athens it resides within, Nea Smyrni took approximately 1 year to construct, and the opening coincided with the 50th anniversary of Panioniois G.S.S. The sports club which the football team belongs to first formed in 1890 as “Orpheus Smyrni”.
Between 2001 and 2003, a modest program of modernisation has occurred. These include the refurbishment of matchday facilities for supporters such as the cafeteria, club shop, press area, and the installation of a roof across the east stand. In line with other stadiums across Greece, electronic turnstile system was installed in 2009 to speed up access into the stadium.
The highest level of football held at Nea Smyrni to date has arguably been the group stages of the UEFA Cup. During the 2004/2005 season, Panionios defeated Udinese in the play-offs to enter a group containing Newcastle United, Sporting CP, Dinamo Tbilisi and Sochaux. Some fans however may point to the quarter final loss against SS Lazio in the 1998 Cup Winners Cup as the greatest European Achievement.
As for the future of Nea Smyrni Stadium, it appears as if given the choice Panionios would leave. The club revealed plans for a new state-of-the-art 12,000 capacity sports venue in 2010, however the state of the Greek economy has proven to be a huge obstacle. Expected to cost €60 million euros, it is currently seen as a very risky investment, and thus is unlikely to occur any time soon.
Below is a seating plan of Panionios's Nea Smyrni Stadium:
The Matchday Experience
Away fans are usually housed within the south stand which is the curva behind the goal on Themistokli Sofouli. Visiting supproters can access this section of the ground through gate 9.
You can purchase a small amount of merchandise from the various stalls outside the ground on matchdays however the range is quite limited. Unfortunately the online store of Panionios G.S.S appears to be indefinitely closed so it’s impossible to browse the range of official merchandise.
It doesn’t appear as if either Panionios G.S.S or the local sports department offer guided tours of Nea Smyrni. We doubt this will ever change, so you’re best bet to see the stadium is to simply attend a match.
Although the official website suggests that you can purchase match tickets online since around 2014 (when the page was last updated), it doesn’t appear to be the case any more.
This means that you should purchase your tickets on match-day before kick-off from the various ticket booths at the ground. Don’t expect to pay much more than €15.00 for a seat in the main stand.
Panionios G.S.S is named and located within the Athenian suburb of Nea Smyrni which is located approximately 5.7 km south-west of Athens historical city centre.
The stadium’s address for satnav is as follows:
- Chrisostomou, Nea Smirni 171 22, Greece
You won’t find any on-site parking at Nea Smirni Stadium due to the dense urban location.
Airports and Flying
Greek’s capital city and cradle of civilisation is served by Athens International Airport which is situated just under 30km from the city centre. Upon landing you can travel into Athens via the metro and overground train services.
Back on the Leof. Andrea Siggrou main road less than 10 minutes west of the ground you will find numerous accommodation options including three no frills choices in Hotel Lakoba, Hotel Medousa and Hotle Nestorion.
Further back towards the historic centre of Athens there are of course plenty of places to stay at a slightly higher cost including a Radisson Blu, InterContinental Athenaeum and the MetropolitanHotel.