COLOGNE, May 3. /TASS/. The Russian ice hockey team landed on Wednesday in Germany’s Cologne, which jointly with the French capital of France, is hosting the 2017 IIHF (International Ice Hockey Federation) World Championship.
The championship kicks off this Friday, May 5, and the Russian team, led by Head Coach Oleg Znarok, will be playing its first group stage match on this day against the national squad from Sweden.
The 2017 IIHF tournament will be held in Germany’s Cologne at its 18,500-seat Lanxess Arena and in the French capital at the Bercy 14,500-seat venue from May 5 through May 21, 2017.
Cologne will host 34 games, including Group A, two quarter-finals and all semi-final and medal games. Paris will host 30 games, including all games of Group B and two quarter-final games.
Group A in Cologne includes last year’s IIHF championship host and bronze medalist Russia, which was ranked second in the 2016 IIHF Men’s World Ranking, as well as Team USA, Sweden, Slovakia, Germany, Latvia, Denmark and Italy.
Russia will begin vying for the champion’s title this year with the match against Sweden on May 5 at 5:15 Moscow time (14:15 GMT) at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne.
Defending champion Canada will start its campaign in Group B in Paris, where they had been seeded against last year’s silver-medal winners Finland, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Belarus, Norway, France and Slovenia.