Arena Ama­zo­nia passes 2014 World Cup test

Daily Trust - - SPORT - Joseph Sepp Blat­ter

The Arena Ama­zo­nia in Manaus held its first of­fi­cial 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil test event on Thurs­day evening, a Brazil­ian Cup tie be­tween Re­sende and Vasco da Gama. Fully open for the first time since its com­ple­tion, the sta­dium wel­comed a crowd of over 32,000 for the game, which ended in a goal­less draw.

The teams of the Brazil 2014 Or­gan­is­ing Com­mit­tee (LOC) took part in the test event, the first time they have done so at any of the six sta­di­ums not used at last year’s FIFA Con­fed­er­a­tions Cup.

The sta­di­ums in Cu­ritiba, Porto Ale­gre, Natal, Sao Paulo and Brasilia will each host one more test event, while Cuiaba will stage two tests, the first of them tak­ing place on 26 April, a Brazil­ian sec­ond di­vi­sion match be­tween Lu­ver­dense and Vasco. Manaus will also host a sec­ond test event, the date of which has yet to be de­cided.

Thurs­day’s cup tie pro­vided an op­por­tu­nity to test cer­tain as­pects of clean­ing and waste man­age­ment, trans­port, com­pe­ti­tions, safety and se­cu­rity, spec­ta­tor ser­vices, vol­un­teers and tech­nol­ogy. There were some short­com­ings, which are en­tirely to be ex­pected in an ini­tial test, though the LOC teams made their pres­ence felt in ar­eas such as spec­ta­tor ser­vices and vol­un­teers.

“We had 32,000 happy people in the sta­dium. There were no prob­lems at all, no in­ci­dents of note and people were able to move freely in the con­courses and aisles,” ex­plained Brazil 2014 LOC Sta­dium Op­er­a­tions Man­ager Ti­ago Paes.

“The process of adapt­ing to a new sit­u­a­tion is gen­er­ally quite slow, but Manaus did a great job,” he added. “We still haven’t tested out num­bered tick­ets, and the tick­et­ing sys­tem was dif­fer­ent to the one that will be used at the World Cup. Even so the fans be­haved su­perbly in this first test.”

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