2014-2015 La Liga Stadium Tour: Real Sociedad – Anoeta
Plans are afoot to remove the running track and upgrade Anoeta, so without further ado, we take our stadium tour to the San Sebastián home of Real Sociedad.
From a distance, Real Sociedad’s Anoeta home looks a picture. Its fabulous curves match the rolling Basque countryside that surrounds it. Step inside however, and there is a problem: A big orange problem. You see Anoeta’s design has been cursed by that pantomime villain of football stadium design, the athletics track.
Opened in 1993, Anoeta could not be more different than the claustrophobic surroundings of Atotxa, the club’s previous home. At Atotxa, fans were used to standing less than five feet away from the goal-mouth. At Anoeta, fans can be up to 50 metres away from the nearest action.
Anoeta’s capacity is only slightly larger than Atotxa at 32,076, but it is of course all-seated. The roof undulates and peaks on each side of the pitch, under which sit large two-tiers of seating. These sweep away to the lower ends, which include between their two tiers a third mezzanine level. It does look very attractive and has weathered surprisingly well, but it’s still an athletics stadium with a football pitch.
As a result, La Real has never been happy with Anoeta. A number of plans to alter the lay-out have been considered, the latest emerging in the spring of 2014. This would involve excavating the playing area and extending the lower tier closer to the pitch. Corporate facilities would be expanded and the roof extended to cover the new seating area. This would increase capacity and cost of €40m.
For the full story of about the Anoeta, see the article at estadiosdeespana.com