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FIFA inspectors praise Kazan-Arena readiness for 2018 World Cup matches

October 17, 2014, 15:13 UTC+3 KAZAN
A joint delegation of FIFA representatives and Russia’s Local Organizing Committee are inspecting the construction and the state of readiness of Russian stadiums to host the World Cup in 2018
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© ITAR-TASS/Maxim Tumanov

KAZAN, October 17. /TASS/. An inspection commission from the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA) gave on Friday a high evaluation mark of the Kazan-Arena stadium, which is located in the Russian city of Kazan and is one of 12 Russian arenas to host matches of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

A joint delegation of FIFA representatives and Russia’s Local Organizing Committee are inspecting on October 16-23 the construction and the state of readiness of Russian stadiums, which were selected to host the World Cup matches in 2018.

Christian Unger, the head of FIFA 2018 football championship preparation department, said his first impression after inspecting the Kazan-Arena was that it is a wonderful stadium.

Unger also said that it was only the first inspection of the stadium and he could not wait to come to this stadium more in the future.

The newly-built 45,000-seat capacity Kazan-Arena opened in 2013. The same year it was the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies of 2013 Summer Universiade. The inaugural football match was held at the arena in August this year.

This is the first large-scale visit of FIFA evaluation commission to inspect the readiness of the Russian cities for the 2018 World Cup and there were planned seven more similar inspections before the launch of the world championship.

According to the FIFA official website the current joint delegation includes 40 experts “in the areas of designing and building stadiums, preparing and operating competitions, security, transport, logistics, hospitality services, broadcasting, media operations, medical control, staff performance, and marketing and ticketing programs.”

Russia won the bid to host the 2018 World Cup less than four years ago in a tight race against the joint bid from England, Portugal and Spain and the joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.

In 2012 Russia announced the total allocated budget of 664.1 billion rubles for the organization of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in August that the number of 12 stadiums in a total of 11 cities selected to host the World Cup would not be changed. The Russian president said, however, that in terms of financial spending on the World Cup preparations for Russia would be an “uneasy story,” but manageable.

Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.

The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held at 12 stadiums located in the 11 mentioned above cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital.

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