Atletico Madrid hires Bournemouth groundsman for top job

Dan Gonzalez, a member of AFC Bournemouth’s groundstaff, is leaving the Premier League club to take the head groundsman role at Atletico Madrid’s new Estadio Wanda Metropolitano.

Gonzalez, an Anglo-Spaniard, has handed in his notice and is set to leave for the LaLiga club in the coming weeks.

As the Independent notes, Bournemouth receives regular compliments from visiting managers on its playing surface at Vitality Stadium.

Gonzalez has been working under Robin Wilcox, the head groundsman at the stadium.

With Gonzalez’s decision to move to Atletico, both major Madrid clubs employ British groundsman. Paul Burgess, who is widely considered as one of the world’s best, is in the top role at Real Madrid’s Santiago de Bernabeu.

Burgess previously worked with Arsenal, contributing to the Emirates Stadium design to ensure the turf got the requisite light and air flow.

The Wanda Metropolitano, which opened its doors last month, will host the 2019 Uefa Champions League final.

The 67,000-seat venue was chosen to host the Champions League final ahead of Baku’s Olympic stadium in Azerbaijan, which was the only other candidate in the running to hold the game in June 2019.