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Red Star Belgrade have the most intimidating tunnel in Champions League history

Napoli are first to face the dreaded walk in Group C

The Champions League is as glamorous as it gets, right?

Qualifying for Europe’s premier club competitions means luxurious trips to some of the continent’s finest stadiums.

Only the very best facilities await… well, not quite.

Welcome to hell

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Welcome to hell

Looks like something out of a post-apocalyptic first-person shooter, doesn’t it?

That’s actual a snapshot of the journey Napoli players will take from the dressing room to the pitch when they play Red Star Begrade in Serbia later.

The hosts expect a sell-out 55,000 crowd to create a fiercely hostile atmosphere for the two teams’ Champions League Group C fixture this evening.

And everything is designed to make the Serie A club feel feel intimidated.

The tunnel at the Rajko Mitic Stadium is like something out of a haunted house.

Take a look…

That video was filmed before the ‘Eternal derby’ between Red Star and local rivals Partizan Belgrade.

The walk to the pitch takes longer than a minute and is deliberately unwelcoming with its graffiti-coated walls and armed police presence.

Fair to say it’s in stark contrast to the luxury Champions League standard players are familiar with.

The players start in a bleak, claustrophobic entrance

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The players start in a bleak, claustrophobic entrance

Armed guards line the walls on either side

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Armed guards line the walls on either side

There’s pro-Red Star graffiti everywhere you look

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There’s pro-Red Star graffiti everywhere you look

The whole experience is designed to unsettle Red Star’s opponents

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The whole experience is designed to unsettle Red Star’s opponents

While Napoli will be the first to step into Red Star’s cauldron, this trip also awaits Liverpool and PSG.

In what could be a fiercely competitive group, how each team responds to the atmosphere in Belgrade may prove decisive.

There’s two choices, sink or swim.


NEXT: 9 incredibly pleasing things about the Champions League this season