Why Don’t Cardiff City Play At The Millennium Stadium?

Hamish Woodward

Cardiff City have had two fantastic grounds in Ninian Park and The Cardiff City Stadium, but the Bluebirds have never called the Millennium Stadium their home.

While Cardiff famously played in their home city for the 2003 Football League Second Division play-off final victory over Queens Park Rangers, the home of Welsh rugby has remained just another stadium in the city for the Bluebirds.

Cardiff have actually played in Wembley Stadium more times this century than the Millennium Stadium (now called the Principality Stadium), appearing in an FA Cup Final (and semi-final), League Cup Final and Play Off Final in the home of English football.

Cardiff City lost to Harry Redknapp’s Portsmouth in the 2008 FA Cup Final at Wembley Stadium.

Cardiff City play at the aptly named Cardiff City Stadium, and have done since their 2009 move from former ground Ninian Park.

While the Millennium Stadium is the biggest stadium in Cardiff, it is owned and operated by Millennium Stadium plc, a subsidiary company of the Welsh Rugby Union.

The WRU have allowed football to be played at the ground, with Wales playing the majority of their international matches at the 74,000 seater stadium between 2000 and 2012.

The Millennium Stadium is the biggest stadium in Wales, and the fourth biggest in the UK.

However, due to dwindling attendance after decades of disappointment from the team, the FAW made the decision to make the Cardiff City Stadium the new home of Welsh football.

Just as Cardiff City had done in 2009, the Welsh National Team moved to the Cardiff City Stadium permanently for their EURO 2012 qualifiers. This smaller venue improved the atmosphere in the stadium and immediately improved the side’s home from.

The FAW did book one more qualifier in the Millennium Stadium in 2011. For the Wales vs England game in the EURO 2012 qualifiers, they moved Wales back to the rugby ground to sell more tickets to the high-profile match for the Dragons.

Sadly, England won the match 2-0 and dampened Wales’ hopes of qualifying, in a match that all-but ended Robert Earnshaw’s international career.

The improved atmosphere has been labelled a key factor for Wales success in qualifying for EURO 2016 – Wales’ first major tournament appearance since 1958.

The last time Wales played at the Millennium Stadium was in a friendly against Spain in 2018, where Sam Vokes scored in a 4-1 loss to the former World Champions.

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