Wed. Oct 23rd, 2019

Wanda Metropolitan: enjoy Atleti with all your senses

6 min read

” Dad, why are the Atleti?”. As children, the fans of the rojiblanco club usually go with the changing pace and watch football with other eyes. That is why the campaign of the advertising agency Mrs. Rushmore was so successful in which the father did not know how to answer the big question with which we opened this article. Perhaps the answer is found in the centennial anthem that Joaquín Sabina composed: “Don’t ask me why the rojiblancos colors go with my way of being.” Because Atleti is more than a club, it is a way of winning, a way of losing. A way to be. 

Samuel was a few days old when he saw his first Atleti game on TV. The mattress genes, which rule. His father, Rafa, does not remember the moment in which he became of Atleti: “Being of Atleti is not chosen. I think I’m from the usual Atleti ”. And his father and grandfather were rojiblancos. And his son, who is already 10 years old, shares the passion. Because as they said in the movie “The secret of their eyes” talking about football, you can change your city, country, work or partner, but you can’t change your passion.

A great stadium for a great hobby

This passion is what reflects the centennial anthem: “What a way to endure, what a way to grow, what a way to feel. what way to dream, what way to learn, what way to suffer, what way to palmar, what way to beat, what way to die… ”

“Atletico’s fans are unique, it’s the soul of the club, and it deserved a stadium like this,” says René Abril, director of Technologies and Systems of the Athletic Club of Madrid. The red and white fans are at the heart of the design of a new stadium at the forefront, which began work in 2016, not only from an architectural point of view but also in the use of technology as a differential element of the amateur’s experience.

Rafa followed closely the construction of the new red and white house. Every day, on the way to work, I passed the works and watched the evolution of the works. The Wanda Metropolitano was inaugurated on September 16, 2017, and its premiere was an event in the world of football. On the day of its inauguration, Rafa could not miss the appointment. There he was with his son Samuel: “When I first entered the stadium I felt very proud. My expectations had been met. The first thing that caught my attention was that it was a modern, spacious, comfortable and very safe field. And, above all, I was surprised by the technological deployment that there was. “

“Smart stadium”

The new home of the mattress team is one of the most innovative stadiums in Europe and the first smart stadium in the Old Continent.  We wanted to design a stadium in which technology, and especially connectivity, was very powerful. And for this design, we were clear that we should go hand in hand with Telefónica since it is a global leader in both telecommunications and business projects for everyone. For us that was key. We chose Telefónica because as a company it has a lot of divisions that are specialists in each area we needed, ”says René Abril.

The technological project consists essentially of a powerful multiservice network, in which each of the services needed by the club has been hosted. Within that network are both security solutions, which include closed-circuit television, access control, and anti-intrusion systems, as well as audiovisual and broadcasting solutions.

But the most important thing is that all this great “technological skeleton” allows the stadium to be prepared to house the innovations that will be produced in the coming years, innovations that we cannot even imagine now.

A hyperconnected stadium

The Club has endowed the stadium with an extraordinarily powerful network infrastructure. Enrique Canellada, director of the Project Office at Telefónica de España and head of this great technological challenge, explains: “The connectivity solutions that are deployed are based on two macro plan connections with the outside of 10 gigabytes; Inside, the integral connectivity of all the elements of the stadium and all users is enhanced. For this reason, there are more than 7,000 network points and more than 1,500 APs that allow Wi-Fi coverage in 100% of the installations. All the services that can be provided have access to the multiservice network, which controls the entire stadium. The venue also has a super powerful and very innovative 4G coverage network at the stadium level of the League and 5G will soon become a reality. ”

René Abril adds: “We have a Wi-Fi network design to be able to reach all the spectators in the stadium simultaneously. It is a very high-density network, we have a Wi-Fi access point for every 40 spectators.  These access points are under the spectators’ seats to have capillarity, “and adds that” Telefónica engineers had a lot to do with this design. We initially wanted to place the antennas on the deck, but at one point in the project, we took a turn because according to their specifications, according to their studies, it was best to put it under the seats. ”

“All this infrastructure allows the fan to reach his stadium and enjoy the connection as if he were in his own home. It is not so easy to achieve that in an enclosure where there are 68,000 spectators, everyone can speak on the mobile phone, have high-speed internet simultaneously. The peak moments always coincide, all the fans want to share the moment of the goal, the moment of triumph with their friends or with their family, everyone connects at the same time. To guarantee this, the infrastructure deployed exceeds that of some cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants, ” concludes René Abril.

Facilitate informative work

An idea that was always in mind is to provide the best possible working conditions for the media. The mobile units that arrive at the stadium for the retransmissions of the games need to have fast and comfortable access to the television network, and for this, the stadium is equipped with 51 fixed television points, with the capacity to connect up to 100 analog cameras and 220 in fiber.

This deployment greatly facilitates the work of the media, since they have a connection point in almost any part of the enclosure to generate their retransmissions. The needs of the rest of the journalists are two: to have workspaces and easy access to communications. That is why they have Wi-Fi coverage throughout the stadium and specific areas at their disposal, such as a press work center, with monitoring bridges to be able to check the images that are being broadcast, which allows informants to carry out their work anywhere in the Stadium with great comfort.

Technology at the service of emotions

Rafa goes to all the games with his son Samuel. He tells us that the meeting days arrive at the stadium long before the doors open. They are the first to enter since Samuel is excited about the show that precedes the meeting.

“Our purpose is that the atmosphere of the stadium is recognizable. What we do is accompany the party with various contents and try to create a great show. Our culminating moment is when we give the team alignment, where both the audio, the music, the video and the lights of the stadium play in unison to create that atmosphere and for our spectators to live it with passion ”, explains the technological director of Atlético from Madrid.

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