Five potential venues for the Super League Magic Weekend in future

The Magic Weekend is easily one of the highlights of the Super League year. 

But something that comes up most years is where the Magic Weekend should be held. Newcastle’s St James’ Park has been a firm favourite with fans, so when Anfield became the destination in 2019, there was much less of an uptake.

Of course, with an event such as the Magic Weekend, it’s not just the quality of stadium that needs to be taken into consideration but also proximity to a big city and the attractions there. So where could the concept be taken in future?

Nou Camp – Barcelona: 99,354

Now, the one thing that stands out immediately from this list is the fact that Barcelona’s Nou Camp holds almost 100,000 spectators. That could make a potential Magic Weekend seem incredibly sparse. That being said, Catalans Dragons and Wigan Warriors took their fixture on the road to the Catalan capital, which attracted over 30,000. The interest is most definitely there and, if marketed properly, who’s to say how many spectators could flock eventually. The idea of having a rugby league concept in Barcelona, too, would be an undoubted pull for many.

Old Trafford – Capacity: 76,000

Already a Grand Final venue, the likelihood of Old Trafford getting anywhere near that many spectators over the course of one day would be unlikely. It is, however surrounded by a number of Super League teams so there could be no moaning about travel in that respect. Of course, the attraction of Manchester over Glasgow and Dublin just isn’t there but it would be interesting to see what kind of crowd could be achieved – especially with it being in the heartlands of the sport.

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London – Capacity: 62,850

London already hosts the Challenge Cup Final with Wembley and the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium (in 2022), so taking the Magic Weekend there too could be overkill. However, it would be interesting to see how the concept would fare in the capital with all ten northern teams and two French teams making the trip there. The attraction of heading to London when it’s not a Challenge Cup Final would be hard to gauge, but at least it would allow supporters of clubs who don’t get the chance to go to the capital too often to make a move down south.

Hampden Park, Glasgow – Capacity: 51,866

Scotland has really been a quandary in terms of rugby league in the past; a Scottish expansion side has ever been touted whilst rugby union and football arguably take precedence. Hampden Park is the national football stadium of Scotland, with Queen’s Park having moved out following over a century there. With Glasgow also a way away from Edinburgh – where the Magic Weekend has been held before – it would bring in new punters that fancy discovering a new city. It’s also practically the same number of miles away from Manchester and Yorkshire as those two areas are from London.

Aviva Stadium, Dublin – Capacity: 51,700

There have been a number of ideas broached in recent years about potential expansion spots across the Irish Sea. Not only is Dublin an excellent sporting hub, it also has the pull of being a beautiful city – and one that has been well converted by tourism. The Aviva Stadium, home to the Irish rugby union team and the Republic of Ireland football side, generates an incredible atmosphere and it would be quite superb to witness the likes of Leeds Rhinos and St Helens do battle in the Irish capital. It would also put the likes of the Dublin Exiles on the map.

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