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World Cup stadiums: A closer look at every venue used in Russia 2018

The Ekaterinburg Arena is one of the most unusual stadiums you'll see
The Ekaterinburg Arena is one of the most unusual stadiums you'll see

Russia is hosting its first World Cup this summer, using 12 stadiums across 11 cities.

Get the lowdown on each of the venues that will stage the 64 matches this June and July, with their respective capacities in brackets.

Ekaterinburg Arena, Yekaterinburg (35,000*)

One of the stands at the Ekaterinburg Arena lies outside the venue, believe it or not
One of the stands at the Ekaterinburg Arena lies outside the venue, believe it or not
  • The most easterly city hosting matches, situated at the foot of the Ural mountains, and the city where members of the royal family were executed following the October 1917 revolution. The stadium is home to FC Ural, and was initially built in 1953.
  • FIFA regulations mean each World Cup venue must have a minimum capacity of 35,000 - and that was proving difficult for this 23,000-seater. The organisers therefore came up with an interesting solution of building a huge temporary stand that extended 'outside' of the stadium.
  • After the tournament, the plan is to take down the temporary seating.
  • Matches: Egypt v Uruguay (June 15), France v Peru (June 21), Japan v Senegal (June 24), Mexico v Sweden (June 27)

Kaliningrad Stadium, Kaliningrad (35,000*)

Kaliningrad Stadium, Kaliningrad
  • The most westerly city to stage games. Situated on the Baltic coast, it remains an important Russian seaport. The stadium has been built for the finals, but will be home to FC Baltika Kaliningrad.
  • Matches: Croatia v Nigeria (June 16), Serbia v Switzerland (June 22), Spain v Morocco (June 25), England v Belgium (June 28)

Kazan Arena, Kazan (45,000*)

Kazan Arena, Kazan
  • Kazan is the capital of the republic of Tatarstan and is home to 1.2 million people. The stadium was built for the World University Games in 2013 and is home to local club Rubin Kazan. It was designed by the same firm of architects behind Wembley Stadium and the Emirates Stadium.
  • Matches: France v Australia (June 16), Iran v Spain (June 20), Poland v Colombia (June 24), South Korea v Germany (June 27), one last-16 game (June 30), one quarter-final (July 6)

Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow (80,000*)

Luzhniki Stadium: The main venue for the 2018 World Cup finals, it will host the first and last match
  • The main venue for the finals will host the first and last match. Built in the 1950s, it was used during the 1980 Olympic Games and hosts most matches played by the Russian national team and at various times has been home to city clubs Spartak, CSKA and Torpedo. Manchester United fans will remember it fondly - it was here, in driving rain, that the club won their third European title by beating Chelsea on penalties in 2008.
  • Matches: Russia v Saudi Arabia (June 14, opening match), Germany v Mexico (June 17), Portugal v Morocco (June 20), Denmark v France (June 26), one last-16 game (July 1), one semi-final (July 11), final (July 15)

Spartak Stadium, Moscow (45,000*)

Spartak Stadium, Moscow
  • Home, as the name suggests, to Spartak Moscow, who despite their reputation and huge fan-base had never truly had a stadium to call their own until it was built. Opened in 2014, it will have a residential area built around it after the finals.
  • Matches: Argentina v Iceland (June 16), Poland v Senegal (June 19), Belgium v Tunisia (June 23), Serbia v Brazil (June 27), one last-16 game (July 3).

Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Nizhny Novgorod (45,000*)

Nizhny Novgorod Stadium
  • Built on hills overlooking the Volga river, Nizhny Novgorod has been a key commercial city since the 19th century. One of the new constructions, it will be home to Olympiets Nizhny Novgorod.
  • Matches: Sweden v South Korea (June 18), Argentina v Croatia (June 21), England v Panama (June 24), Switzerland v Costa Rica (June 27), one last-16 game (July 1), one quarter-final (July 6)


Rostov Arena, Rostov-on-Don (45,000*)

Rostov Arena
  • Rostiv is an historic city famed for its showcasing of Cossack culture, sitting on the banks of the Don river 1,000 kilometres to the south-east of Moscow. FC Rostov will move in once the tournament is finished.
  • Matches: Brazil v Switzerland (June 17), Uruguay v Saudi Arabia (June 20), South Korea v Mexico (June 23), Iceland v Croatia (June 26), one last-16 game (July 2)

St Petersburg Stadium, St Petersburg (67,000*)

St Petersburg Stadium
  • The old imperial capital can probably lay claim to having the secondary venue at the tournament, as the stadium hosts some big games including what could be a make-or-break second match for the hosts. It will also host three group matches at the pan-European Euro 2020 finals, as well as one Euro quarter-final, and is home of Zenit St Petersburg.
  • Matches: Morocco v Iran (June 15), Russia v Egypt (June 19), Brazil v Costa Rica (June 22), Nigeria v Argentina (June 26), one last-16 game (July 3), one semi-final (July 10), third-place play-off (July 14)

Samara Arena, Samara (45,000*)

Samara Arena
  • Capital of the Samara region and home to the offices of Russian state when they were evacuated from Moscow during the Second World War. The dome-shaped stadium will play host to Krylya Sovetov after the tournament.
  • Matches: Costa Rica v Serbia (June 17), Denmark v Australia (June 21), Uruguay v Russia (June 25), Senegal v Colombia (June 28), one last-16 game (July 2), one quarter-final (July 7)

Mordovia Arena, Saransk (44,000*)

Mordovia Arena
  • The capital of the Mordovia region has a population of just over 300,000. The stadium will be reduced to 25,000 capacity after the tournament, with the space being freed up for other indoor sports on the same complex. It will, though, be home to FC Mordovia.
  • Matches: Peru v Denmark (June 16), Colombia v Japan (June 19), Iran v Portugal (June 25), Panama v Tunisia (June 28)

Fisht Stadium, Sochi (48,000*)

Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, Russia: The resort city on the edge of the Black Sea hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics, and the stadium was purpose-built for those Games.
  • The resort city on the edge of the Black Sea hosted the 2014 Winter Olympics, and the Fisht Stadium was purpose-built for those Games. It is due to be a training - and match - venue for the Russia national team after the 2018 finals.
  • Matches: Portugal v Spain (June 15), Belgium v Panama (June 18), Germany v Sweden (June 23), Australia v Peru (June 26), one last-16 game (June 30), one quarter-final (July 7)

Volgograd Arena, Volgograd (45,000*)

Volgograd Arena
  • The city formerly known as Stalingrad, site of one of World War Two's most pivotal battles, is now an industrial hub home to one million inhabitants. The stadium is built on the site of the old Central ground and will house FC Rotor once the finals are over.
  • Matches: Tunisia v England (June 18), Nigeria v Iceland (June 22), Saudi Arabia v Egypt (June 25), Japan v Poland (June 28)

*Stadium capacities listed on fifa.com indicate the anticipated gross capacity for the stadium in its finished state. Stadium official capacities during the finals will be lower than those stated.

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