Ahead of the UEFA Europa League final pitting Ajax against Manchester United at Stockholm’s Friends Arena, UEFA chose Occasion as the agency to help it organise the Neutral Fan Zone. The site chosen was Kungsträdgården in Stockholm, which played host to the Zone for five action-packed days before the final.
In the days leading up to the UEFA Europa League final, UEFA wanted to create a neutral focal point that would reach both dedicated football enthusiasts and the fans of the teams playing in the final, but which would appeal to a broader audience as well. The Neutral Fan Zone was to be a meeting place themed around football, but was also intended to serve as a display window to market the host city of Stockholm.
Over the course of the week, the stage program involved participants like the culture schools of Stockholm and Solna, giving children a stage on which to show off their skills at dancing, vocals and many different kinds of music. Several Swedish football legends were interviewed on stage, and P4 Radio Stockholm was broadcasting live when they crowned Sweden’s greatest footballers through the ages.
To raise awareness of the event and to invite visitors, a number of mini-events were held in Stockholm during the weeks leading up to the event, including at Arlanda airport and at Mall of Scandinavia. A large-scale replica of the Europa League Cup was placed on Norrmalmstorg to drive traffic to Kungsträdgården.
Over 50,000 people visited one of the world’s biggest Fan Zone events. The visitors reported very positive attitudes towards the days. Stockholm showed off its very best side, with thousands of posts appearing on social media with the project’s various hashtags. This meant that both Stockholm and the UEFA Europa League Finals were able to reach far beyond Kungsträdgården and Stockholm.