Russian Premier League's Spartak Moscow Sells Stadium Naming Rights To Otkritie
Russian Premier League Spartak Moscow has "sold the naming rights" to its new stadium to a financial firm, meaning it will be called the Otkritie Arena, according to R-SPORT. The 44,000-seat stadium, one of the 2018 World Cup venues, will "bear the name for six years," the length of a $40M sponsorship agreement between the bank and the nine-time Russian champions. The arena was "provisionally known as the Spartak Stadium." The club follow rivals Dynamo Moscow in "selling naming rights to financial firms," after Dynamo named its new home the VTB-Arena after the VTB bank. Under the contract, Spartak will get $40M over six years that will be invested in the club's infrastructure, training base, academy, programs for ex-players and children’s football (R-SPORT, 2/19). REUTERS reported the stadium, due to be open in early '14 in northwest Moscow, will "host group matches for the 2017 Confederations Cup and the World Cup the following year." Spartak Owner Leonid Fedun, who invested more than $500M of his own money into the project, said, "Several generations of Spartak players starting from the early 1930s have dreamed of playing in their own stadium. Their dreams are soon to become reality" (REUTERS, 2/19).
TRUE COLORS: R-Sport reported Fedun denied "plans were afoot to paint the club's new home in the blue and white colors of bitter rivals Dynamo Moscow." A report claimed Spartak, which plays in red and white, had "agreed to the new paint job as part of an agreement" with Otkritie, which has a blue and white corporate color scheme. Fedun said, "The colors won't change. It's complete nonsense. The stadium is red and white and will stay that way" (R-SPORT, 2/18).