Grass Fears Delay Rubin Kazan's Move To New Stadium Until Next Season
Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said that two-time Russian football champions Rubin Kazan will not move into its new stadium this season because it would "destroy the pitch," according to R-SPORT. The 45,000-capacity Kazan Arena was completed last summer at a reported cost of $400M and hosted ceremonies during July’s University Games, but is "yet to host its first football match." It will be one of the 12 venues when Russia hosts the 2018 World Cup. This means Rubin will continue to play at the 53-year-old Central Stadium, a venue "notorious for pitch problems" that have often caused Rubin to play its spring fixtures in Moscow, 700km from home. The Russian national team will play four friendlies ahead of the World Cup in Brazil, with May 24 and 31 "the most likely dates for a Kazan fixture" (R-SPORT, 1/28).