The World Football Summit named FC Cincinnati’s TQL Stadium Best Venue of 2022 at an awards event on Sept. 28 in Madrid, Spain. The World Football Summit brings together the global football (soccer) industry’s leading stakeholders meet to shape the future of the beautiful game. The Best Venue award is one of ten awards given to recognize achievements in various football industry fields.
MONDO STADIA, a publication focused on in-depth coverage of stadia and sporting venues around the world, will present the Best Venue award and wrote, “The design of TQL Stadium intentionally harnesses the energy of a dedicated fan base to bring a world-class soccer experience to Cincinnati. The new, state-of-the-art venue boasts a striking presence, connecting two historic neighborhoods – Over the Rhine and the West End – and honoring the legacy of soccer in the Queen City through a progressive design and ambitious interpretation of a Cincinnati on the rise.” TQL Stadium was designed by global design firm Populous.
“We built TQL Stadium to be a world-class MLS stadium which would proudly represent Cincinnati across the nation and on the world-stage,” said Jeff Berding, co-CEO FC Cincinnati. “It is an honor to receive this prestigious global recognition. Cincinnati should be proud that TQL Stadium has been awarded Best Venue of 2022 at the World Football Summit.”
TQL Stadium was selected Best Venue by a judging panel. Venues were judged on a range of areas, including:
• Fan Experience
• Technological advances
• Match day operations
• Personalized attention
About FC Cincinnati
FC Cincinnati is a professional soccer team that plays in Major League Soccer (MLS), having entered the league as its 24th team in 2019. The club’s wide and diverse ownership group is led by controlling owner Carl H. Lindner III, as well as managing owners Meg Whitman, Dr. Griff Harsh, Scott Farmer and George Joseph. Originally founded in 2015 by Lindner III and now co-CEO Jeff Berding, FCC began play in the United Soccer League (USL) in 2016. The club won the 2018 USL Regular-Season Championship in record-setting fashion and earned postseason berths in all three of its USL seasons. In 2017, FC Cincinnati also advanced to the semifinals of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, a run that included victories over two MLS squads. In 2022, FCC2 launched and played in the MLS NEXT Pro League. FC Cincinnati opened the club’s privately-funded, 26,000-seat soccer-specific TQL Stadium in the West End neighborhood of Cincinnati in 2021.
About TQL Stadium
TQL Stadium, home of FC Cincinnati, is one of the most ambitious soccer-specific stadiums in not only North America, but the world. Critically acclaimed firm Populous designed an innovative and forward-thinking stadium that is one of the largest soccer-specific facilities in Major League Soccer. The closest seats are within 15 feet of the pitch at the $250 million, privately funded stadium. The stadium includes 53 traditional suites and 4,500 premium seats throughout four premium club spaces. FC Cincinnati’s supporters’ section, The Bailey, seats 3,100 fans and looms over opponents at a 34-degree angle at the stadium’s north end. A 360-degree canopy roof covers every seat in TQL Stadium, but still allows sufficient sun in to grow a natural grass field. The stadium has five team locker rooms, including a comprehensive team suite for FC Cincinnati that features a dressing room, coach’s office, lounge, equipment storage and the Mercy Health Center of Excellence for the team’s medical and game day fitness needs. TQL Stadium meets all current requirements to host CONCACAF and FIFA events, and within the first year of the stadium’s completion has featured both the U.S. Men’s and Women’s National Teams, including the USMNT’s FIFA World Cup Qualification match vs. Mexico teams. The stadium’s first concert was held in May 2022 and featured the legendary rock band The Who