Russia football country: evidence of new stadiums for the 2018 world Cup

Last week at the invitation of the organizing Committee of the football 2018 world Cup went to press tour. The goal is to look at the opening ceremony of the stadiums in Kaliningrad and Yekaterinburg, designed for the world Cup, as well as the arena, of course. Insights?


photo: Alexey Lebedev

First impressions visual: stadiums – very nice! “Ekaterinburg-arena”, which is that children are not frightened (temporary seats located behind the goal, who had the ears of otherworldly beings, and someone- the wings of a dragon) upon closer inspection, it turned out cute, like a character from a fairy tale. And those ears-wings are only added to the arena of coloring.

As for the convenience of the audience (on this occasion also had a lot of experiences: as they say, the fans will be unhappy to suffer for these temporary sectors?), so here it is not so bad. Specially climbed to the corner of the top row, which as it seems from the outside, the half-pitch will not see due to the Central tribunes. All perfectly clear – unlike, by the way, from the old version of the same stadium where even the most Royal places review often closed is stuck in the reason column.

Yes, football players figures – tiny, as in the antediluvian computer game. But in the end is the cheapest places in the first place, of course, the lowly fans, as emphasized in Yekaterinburg: “Those who take tickets for seats behind the goal, and more importantly how to support the team, you will agree, and not to consider the game episodes as clearly as possible”. Agree.

By the way, after 2018 the capacity of the “Ekaterinburg-arena” will be reduced to 23 thousand spectators, the stadium will become a cozy compact home like this. “You know, and we don’t!” – assure the Urals. Here I argue: “Spartacus” on Sunday at 35-thousand stadium was almost sold out. Really matches with other teams will collect a lot less? And yet, they are there, on the spot probably know better. The money in the end, they “discourage”, and the cost of maintaining the stadium are growing every strongly the audience’s place. Temporary stands, incidentally, have already found application: the chair will send a different sports-entertainment locations of the region which is still called Sverdlovsk.

Kaliningrad stadium – the miracle of miracles. – Like in appearance “locomotive”, only much more modern. There is also a 35-thousand – and then the football can be seen perfectly, even from positions outside the gate. Will be filled? Let’s see…

“Initially, the match of our “Baltic” against Samara “Wings”, the usual game within the national Football League (2nd highest division – “MK”), which became a test, planned to sell only 10 thousand tickets. He says, abruptly will not start, told me there the stadium announcer Vladimir Zuev, by the way, the driver of the trolleybus in everyday life (experience – 40 years!). But sold them via the Internet in just a few hours, people used to buy tickets at the box office, not through the Network, began to be indignant, and we? In the end, decided to print 15 thousand. Officially. And sold them! And really, I think it was 17-18 thousand”.

And here we come to another conclusion. The thesis “Russia is a non – football country”, launched after the failure at Euro 2016, then coach of our national team Leonid Slutsky, of course, is what to pull. But here on these arenas, watching people go into the stands with their families (despite the fact that around the same “Stadium Kaliningrad” for now – almost empty field, which of course must be repaired immediately), start “the wave”, as sincerely rejoice in the victory of the team from your ancient city, I think that is largely the point – the habit that have to produce, well, in the infrastructure, not the quality of football.

Does “Baltic” and “wings of the Soviets”, even though they lead good players in the recent past, and nowadays interesting coaches Igor Cherevchenko and Andrei Tikhonov, a week in a different way to play learned? No! While the game looked. Quite on the level of the 2nd German Bundesliga. Because entourage… And I’m not talking about suddenly blooming no worse than any of Eintracht from Frankfurt Ural honored-perezaluzhenie Tarkhanov Alexander Fedorovich!

And God forbid we all save it, to teach people to March to the football two or three times a month – then the words Slutsky after a couple of years will be remembered as a story for children. Like the one talked about…

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