MOSCOW, March 19. /TASS/. Some 50,000 tickets have been already sold for a friendly football match between Russia and Brazil, which kicks off this Friday in the Russian capital of Moscow at the Luzhniki Stadium, an official with the Russian Football Union (RFU) told TASS on Monday.
"As of now, some 50,000 tickets have been sold and I believe this figure is likely to reach the number of 60,000," Vladimir Karpovich, RFU’s commercial director, said in an interview with TASS.
"The weather and Neymar’s absence on the Brazilian team’s roster will most likely have an (negative) impact on ticket sales," Karpovich said.
The Brazilian Football Confederation announced a week ago its lineup for the friendly match against Russia and its forward and captain Neymar, who is the world’s one of the top players today, was not on the roster of the national squad.
On top of all, Moscow have been recently hit by unusually cold weather for this time of the year as well as by heavy snow storms and, according to weather forecasts the temperatures in the Russian capital on Friday night are expected to hover at around zero centigrade Celsius.
The friendly match between Russia and Brazil will be played at the Luzhniki Stadium, which is one of 12 stadiums across the country selected as the venue for 2018 FIFA World Cup matches. The stadium in the Russian capital will also host the opening and final games of the championship.
The Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow opened after the reconstruction works in November with a friendly match between the national teams of Russia and Argentina (0-1).
The refurbishment of the Luzhniki Arena began in 2013 as part of the country’s preparations to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The stadium is expected to extend its spectator capacity up to 81,000 seats for the global football championship.
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 between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 aforementioned cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital.