Valencia, who sit in the lower echelons of La Liga, play in the shadow of what could have been one of the world’s biggest stadiums, a dream that was broken in the midst of Spain’s 2008 financial crisis, the recession.

At the time construction work of their new 75,000 seat stadium, ground to a halt. Today, the Nou Mestalla remains half-built.

The La Liga side’s former president Juan Soler announced plans for the new ground in November 2006, with construction scheduled to start in August 2007 and a completion date ahead of the 2009-10 season.

Global finances in the crisis lead to increasing debts at the time.

Former defender Fabio Aurelio, who played for the club under Rafa Benitez during 2000-06, told FourFourTwo: “You look from the outside and think the stadium is finished, but it’s not. Nobody can really say if that day will ever come.”

Aurelio, 43, who made 96 appearances for Valencia, before joining Liverpool in 2006, again under Benitez, said: “it’s sad because you’ve lived there and you know the city. The club and the fans deserve a stadium like this.”

Today the stadium is abandoned – despite multiple proposals over the subsequent years.

Valencia had been dependent on selling their current Mestalla home to fund the new build – but the recession of 2008 hit the property market hard and they couldn’t find a buyer.

Construction was stopped on what was meant to be the world’s greatest football stadium in 2009 after a reported £90million bank loan to fund the remaining work was denied.

In December 2011, a deal was agreed with Spanish bank Bankia to complete the stadium and give them ownership of the current ground, but the deal fell through.