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2018 FIFA World Cup Host Cities Official Posters

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Russia’s western-most city, Kaliningrad is unique. The athlete in this poster symbolizes the open spirit of the city and region, embracing both the old and the new with an eye towards the future. It is a city whose spirit is derived from the water that surrounds it, and whose soul is reflected in the football made of world-famous amber sunstone. Located 1235 km east of Moscow and situated on the beautiful Baltic Sea, the city, its people and its architecture are an historical mixture of cultures in this distinctive Russian enclave facing west. As the hometown of philosopher Immanuel Kant, the city is alive with iconic structures such as the King’s Gate, the Kant monument, Konigsberg Cathedral and Kneiphof Island.

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Kazan…even the name sounds magical – and it is. Kazan is the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan, an autonomous republic of the Russian Federation located 825 km west of Moscow. The Snow Leopard is the national symbol of the republic and is the central focus of Kazan’s poster, rising from the pitch, perched on a football. The national colours of the Tatarstan flag are included in the boards around the pitch, and the rays of sunlight reflect optimism, success and good fortune in Tatar culture. Kazan is a major centre for sport in Russia and will host the Summer Universiade in 2013.

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The vivid colours of red and orange represent passion, movement and expression in Russian culture. The athlete’s body in this poster is created with a traditional Russian design technique called Khokhloma. This folk-handicraft style is well known and well loved throughout Russia and abroad, and provides a sense of flowing movement and energy to the athlete. Nizhny Novgorod’s beautiful 16th century Kremlin, which sits on a hill in the city centre at the confluence of the Oka and the Volga Rivers is silhouetted in the background.

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Moscow is one of the world’s great capitals, rich in iconic, historic architecture, yet focused on a future that is bright and youthful. Beneath the walls of the ancient Kremlin beats a city that is second-to-none in terms of energy, style and fun. These elements are reflected in the colourful swirls on the poster. The football pitch and the giant ball demonstrate Moscow’s passion for the world’s greatest game. Just as Moscow is the heart and soul of a Russia, it is also is the centrepiece of the 2018 FIFA World Cup RussiaTM.

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Located in the southeastern part of European Russia at the convergence of the mighty Volga and Samara Rivers, Samara is a city famous in Russia for its passionate, love of football. This passion is reflected in the poster by the strong, colourful geometric lines exploding upward, towards the future. The traditional symbols of Samara, the Monument of Glory and the Ladya Boat, are depicted as well and the pose of the football player mimics the figure at the top of the Monument of Glory. Visitors and residents alike flock to the beaches along the banks of the Volga for fun and sun, and this atmosphere is reflected in the bold bright colours of the poster.

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Rostov-on-Don is a port city on the Don River, 1109 km southwest of Moscow. Horses are a powerful symbol in the city’s history as seen in the First Cavalry Army monument, forming the base of the image in the poster. The Don River, central to the city’s identity, is represented by the blue swirling “waves” under the horses’ churning hooves. Green oak branches, which mimic the colour of the football pitch, resemble, the Rostov-on-Don city’s heraldic emblem. Finally, the football includes the red, blue and orange colours of the Rostov region flag.

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Sochi, Russian beautiful resort on the sunny Black Sea is a city of contrasts. From the warm, seaside beaches to the heights of the snow capped Krasnaya Polyana mountain range Sochi is really a Sea-to-Sky city and experience. The poster represents a football uniting the sea and the mountains and reflective of the region’s hospitality and welcoming spirit.

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As the capital of the republic of Mordovia, Saransk is located where the Saranka and Insar Rivers converge, in the Volga basin, about 650 kilometres east of Moscow. The bird depicted in the poster is the “bird of creation” in Mordovian mythology, a powerful and evocative figure, symbolizing nature and life itself. The bird and the football are decorated with the traditional Mordovian pattern representing the uniqueness of the local art and crafts. The football on the poster represents the important role of the World Cup for the people of the region.

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Just as the city of Volgograd draws its energy and spirit from the Volga River, so does the poster. Produced in a modern, dynamic style reminiscent of today’s modern visual technologies, the poster’s colours are drawn from the river itself, the sun and the emotions associated with the game of football. The image is based on waves and movement, much like a football team in motion. The wave lifts the football above the river’s surface just as the 2018 FIFA World CupTM will lift the people of Russia’s spirit to new heights.

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Russia’s Crown Jewel of the north, St. Petersburg offers magic at any time of the year. St. Petersburg has inspired poets, artists, musicians and writers from its beginnings as Peter the Great’s modern window on the world. St. Petersburg’s truly unique architecture is featured on the poster, from the Saint Isaac's and Smolny Cathedrals to the Summer Palace gate and Admiralty tower. The city is known for its strong football culture and it is represented in the football on the poster.

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Ekaterinburg, situated near the Ural Mountains is the point where the continents of Europe and Asia meet. At the centre of the image is a “Stone Flower”; the stone is the beautiful gemstone malachite, famous to the region. The Stone Flower is also the name of a famous Russian novel by Pavel Bazhov, set in the Urals. The colours of the poster represent the Urals, the mountains and the rich soil of the region. The colour blue represents the Iset River. All of the graphical elements in the poster are without distinct or fully depicted borders, reflecting the fact that there are no boundaries for the countries that love football.

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Krasnodar governor outraged by FIFA decision

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Aleksandr Tkachev, the governor of Russia's Krasnodar Region, has lashed out at FIFA, football’s governing body, for its decision against selecting the capital of his region for inclusion among the World Cup 2018 host cities.

“I just met with the fans of Kuban and FC Krasnodar,” Tkachev wrote on his Twitter feed. “The occasion for the get-together was, of course, a sad one – the exclusion of Krasnodar from the list of World Cup 2018 cities. Just like the football lovers, I’m deeply angered with this decision by FIFA. It's humiliating. It makes one lose heart. We did everything we could to bring the tournament to Krasnodar. And the city was worth it. But FIFA decided differently."

“I’m telling you, with the World Cup or without it – the city of Krasnodar will become the capital of Russian football. And we’ll build a brand new world-class stadium here,” he concluded.

The FIFA ruling doesn’t mean that Krasnodar will fully miss out on the World Cup action, though, as resort town Sochi, in the region's far south, made it to the list of the 11 host cities.

The other ten venues to stage Russia 2018 matches are Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara, Rostov-on-Don, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Saransk and the country’s capital, Moscow.

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Model of the Krasnodar Stadium, planned to be constructed for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. (RIA Novosti)

http://rt.com/sport/...rldcup2018-453/

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Kaliningrad and Yekaterinburg to host matches in 2018 FIFA World Cup finals

By David Gold

September 29 - Fans attending the Russia 2018 FIFA World Cup could spend whole days or more travelling after the confirmation tonight that Kaliningrad and Yekaterinburg are among the 11 cities chosen to host matches.

Also selected to host matches were Rostov-on-Don, Sochi, Moscow, Kazan, St Petersburg, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara, Saransk and Volgograd.

Moscow will have two venues which means that there will be 12 stadiums hosting the 64 matches.

Yaroslavl and Krasnodar were the two who missed out, with Saransk, Volgograd and Rostov-on-Don the other cities who came into this evening unsure if they would receive the right to host matches.

Kaliningrad's battle to stage games was helped in part by Franz Beckenbauer, President of the Germany 2006 World Cup and a former member of FIFA's ruling Executive Committee, who came on board to assist them with promoting their bid.

Located between Poland and Lithuania, Kaliningrad is disconnected from the rest of Russia and its selection along with Yekaterinburg in the east means the World Cup will span the whole of the European part of the country.

But it also means, with 2,500 kilometres between the two cities, that travelling between them could be an arduous task.

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It takes approximately 24 hours just to get from Yekaterinburg to Moscow, unless the new high speed rail network Russian Railways have planned is constructed.

However, there is uncertainty at present over whether Russia will go ahead with its plans to create a high speed rail network connecting the host cities.

Funding for the project is not included in federal spending plans for the next three years.

The new rail network would have cost R5.6 trillion (£112 million/$177 million/€141 million), with 70 per cent due to be funded by the Russian state.

Transport was identified as the biggest weakness of Russia 2018 by FIFA during the World Cup bidding process, when they beat England and joint bids from Belgium and Holland and Portugal and Spain.

The issue will be offset to some extent by the clustering concept, with four different clusters to reduce travel time between venues.

Russia will be aiming to keep teams within one or two clusters, rather than sending them across the country during the group stage of the tournament – unlike 2014 hosts Brazil.

The first cluster is in the north, and consists of Kaliningrad and St Petersburg, and the second will be Moscow and the central region.

The third is the Volga River cluster running from the centre to the south of Russia, which includes Nizhny Novgorod, Kazan, Saransk, Samara and Volgograd.

The southern cluster will be made up of Sochi and Rostov-on-Don, and then there is the stand alone city of Yekaterinburg in the east.

The confirmation of the 11 host cities was the first major landmark for Russia 2018 following the award of the World Cup to the country in Zurich in December 2010.

The announcement was made live on television, on Russia's Channel One, on their "Tonight" show, and came three months after a delegation from FIFA and Russia 2018 visited all of the prospective host cities to inspect their facilities and potential to stage matches during the World Cup.

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Speaking prior to the announcement, FIFA President Sepp Blatter (pictured above) praised Russia's preparations thus far, saying: "The selection of the host cities is a very important step and it shows that here in Russia and in Moscow, we are already prepared to start.

"And it is the first time that the World Cup will be staged in Eastern Europe and naturally the first time we are in Russia.

"I am happy that that the youth in this room and in Russia are happy to stage the World Cup!

"It is important, we go with the World Cup around the world, we have been in Europe and the Americas, in Asia, South Africa, soon to Brazil.

"But now we go to Russia!

"We are convinced it will be a great success, because not only you are behind it, all the footballers here, the Duma, all are behind this World Cup.

"I have to make a compliment to Russia, and the local Organising Committee for the professionalism for how they have started to work...you are much advanced."

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Blatter's words reflected FIFA's confidence, and probably relief, at the solid progress of Russia's preparations for 2018, given the problems that they have faced in Brazil ahead of the next World Cup in two years' time.

Russia still has a sizeable task on its hands though, with each stadium being used either being renovated or built anew.

It was already known that Moscow would host matches, with the new Spartak Moscow stadium confirmed as the venue which share games with the Luzhniki (pictured above), the main stadium for the 1980 Olympics.

The Luzhniki will host the final and probably a semi-final as well, but it means Dynamo Moscow's new ground misses out.

St Petersburg is also set to host a semi-final of the tournament along with Moscow.

The decision was made after a meeting of FIFA's Executive Committee in Zurich.

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Vitaly Mutko, Russia's Sports Minister ,who is the chairman of the Russia 2018 Organising Committee, as well as a FIFA Executive Committee member, was also present at the announcement along with FIFA secretary general Jérôme Valcke, the man effectively responsible for the tournament, and Russia 2018 chief executive Alexey Sorokin.

Other guests included former England manager Fabio Capello, who is now coaching Russia's national team, and Roberto Carlos (pictured above), a member of Brazil's World Cup winning team in 2002 who is now the sporting director of Russian League side Anzhi Makhachkala.

Mutko said: "The final selection of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Host Cities is an important milestone en route to hosting the tournament in 2018.

"This decision launches the full-scale preparation for the FIFA World Cup in the 11 Host Cities across the country.

"I believe all of them broadly represent the cultural and historical diversity of our nation.

"At the same time, their energetic nature and connection with Russian footballing tradition will allow the FIFA World Cup to leave a powerful and sustainable legacy in all of them."

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Sochi, where the Fisht Olympic Stadium (pictured above) is being built for the 2014 Winter Olympics, will also become a World Cup venue.

In ethnically diverse Russia, Kazan is the only venue in a largely Muslim region.

The new venue will host football at the Summer Universiade, which is taking place in the city next year.

Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, emphasised the social and physical importance of the World Cup for the country, saying: "We would like to improve the nation's health and these big tournaments are opportunities to attract people to go for sport.

"It is something that really stimulates economic development.

"We can invest a good amount of money into the right places, to create new jobs, infrastructure.

"It is very important that this will be a good driver for our economy in the construction sector....every job can create thousands of others in other sectors."

http://www.insidewor...orld-cup-finals

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Samara: World Cup 2018 Stadium to Cost $320m

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Authorities in the Russian city of Samara are earmarking $320 million for the construction of a 44,000-seater arena for the 2018 World Cup.

16:20 05/10/2012

MOSCOW, October 5 (RIA Novosti)

Authorities in the Russian city of Samara are earmarking $320 million for the construction of a 44,000-seater arena for the 2018 World Cup.

The central Russian city with a population of 1.2 million was among 11 to make the final list of host cities announced last week by FIFA and Russian organizers.

All of the 12 stadiums needed for the tournament require constructing from scratch or dramatic refurbishments to fall into line with FIFA standards.

Those costs were included into the total World Cup cost of $19.2 billion as announced by Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko last week.

Samara is likely to host group stage matches at its stadium, to be built on an island in the Volga River.

"We will announce a tender to undertake the pre-project documentation for the stadium bowl itself and the infrastructure, including access roads," the regional government quoted vice governor Alexander Nefedov as saying.

"The total amount of project work for the first stage will cost around 800 million rubles ($2.5 million)," he said.

Total spending on the stadium will amount to 10 billion rubles ($320 million), Nefedov said.

Some urban planners were skeptical about the possibility of constructing the stadium on an island in the Volga because it is a long way from the airport and there could be problems developing transport infrastructure, as well as the possible demolition of a number of historical buildings.

The 2018 World Cup is to take place in Moscow, which will host the final at Luzhniki stadium, as well as St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Yekaterinburg, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Saransk, Samara and Nizhny Novgorod.

Earlier this week, authorities in Saransk declared they would need $1.9 billion for the tournament, while officials in Yekaterinburg put the figure for their city at over $3 billion.

http://en.ria.ru/spo.../176425569.html

Saransk to receive $2 billion transformation for 2018 World Cup

Friday, 05 October 2012

By David Gold

October 5 - Saransk in Russia is gearing up to be transformed for the FIFA World Cup in 2018, with $2 billion (£1.2 billion/€1.5 billion) set to be invested in what is the smallest city hosting matches during the tournament.

The figure being invested is a tenth of the overall budget for the World Cup, which Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, also the chairman of Russia 2018, revealed had doubled at the weekend.

The city, which has a population of 300,000, and was one of those uncertain to be selected for the World Cup prior to last Saturday's (September 29) announcement by FIFA.

However, it beat Krasnodar and Yaroslavl to win the right to host matches.

"It's not only Saransk that will be transformed, but the entire republic," said a statement from the Government of the republic of Mordovia, of which Saransk is the capital.

"The sources of finance will be the federal and regional budgets and also private investment."

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The investment will transform all federal highways, upgrade rail infrastructure and the city's airport – which will require a temporary terminal.

The upgrades are planned to help World Cup commuters travel to Moscow in five hours by rail.

Vladimir Volkov, the Governor of Mordovia, said: "The town is well arranged, the people are very hospitable.

"Economy-class student housing, a stadium, all this will appear for the World Cup."

Saransk is also constructing a new 45,000-capacity stadium for the tournament, which will reduce in size after the World Cup.

http://www.insidewor...n-for-world-cup

FIFA World Cup 2018: Volgograd fans to taste Watermelon Honey

October 5, 2012

The Voice of Russia

The beautiful city by the Volga River will have a host of activities for football fans and other visitors during the World Cup.

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Volgograd is one of the host cities of the FIFA World Cup, which will take place in the summer of 2018 in Russia.. Source: AFP/East News

Volgograd is one of the host cities of the FIFA World Cup, which will take place in the summer of 2018 in Russia. Preparations for the championship have already begun. The city authorities are busy developing plans for a “fans’ city”, where people will be given the chance not just to relax, but also to get acquainted with the rich culture of the Lower Volga region.

The city, on the bank of the River Volga, is being built to impress both fans and participants in the championship not only with its amazing landscapes but also with a high standard of organisation. Construction of the Victory (Pobeda) stadium, which will be the venue for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, is to begin in the near future. It will be capable of holding 45 thousand spectators.

In addition, a fan zone will be created on the bank of the Volga River, the largest river in Europe. According to the plan, the city’s central streets will become pedestrian zones during the matches. Chairman of the Committee for the Preparation and Holding of the FIFA World Cup 2018 in the Volgograd Region, Igor Kozlov says.

“Transport infrastructure will be seriously reorganised. A fan-zone will be constructed in the natural amphitheatre between the upper and lower terraces of the embankment in the centre of the city. And from there, a walking route to the stadium will be laid, where fans will be able to rest and take part in sports. In the centre, at a distance of 4-5 km, there will be a space, where fans can spend free time and visit the stadium.”

According to the Organising Committee’s plan, in between the matches, tourists will be able to get acquainted with the rich history of the city on the Volga River. It has changed its name three times: first it was Tsaritsyn, and in Soviet times it became Stalingrad. It was also the scene of a decisive battle in which Hitler’s troops were defeated in 1945. After that the city was literally razed to the ground. Of all the historic buildings, only one 18th century Orthodox Church survived. However, many natural parks and even caves once inhabited by hermit monks can be found in the suburbs, their original appearance still preserved. By the way, Volgograd also has its own culinary history, guide, Galina Gordeeva says.

“We have our own mustard oil. Colonists brought it to the Lower Volga region from Germany in 1765. They came as missionaries and one of them bred a hybrid of grey mustard. And they began to make oil, from these seeds, which has now became an integral part of our lives. In the past, we used to cook a watermelon dessert called ‘norbek.’ It is watermelon syrup that is boiled down until it’s reduced to the consistency of honey.”

There are still six years to go for the final of the FIFA World Cup 2018, but the local authorities are already preparing the infrastructure for an influx of guests. Five-star hotels and budget mini-hotels are being built throughout the city; projects of bypasses and car parks are also underway. Expansion of the international airport will soon get underway too. By the way, you can get from Volgograd to Moscow in an hour and a half by plane, or you can take a river cruise. And though going by road will take a few days, tourists doing so will have a chance to visit at least a dozen Russian cities.

http://indrus.in/art...oney_18143.html

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Russia 2018 sets visa-free regime for World Cup ticket holders

By Andrew Warshaw

October 9 - Russia 2018 has reiterated plans to scrap visa requirements for fans – provided they have FIFA World Cup tickets

Alexander Djordjadze, deputy chief executive and international relations director of Russia 2018, made the pledge during a special event in Moscow.

"We [have] offered the Government a project on the visa-free regime for all those possessing tickets," said Djordjadze.

"During the event, fans will be allowed to use their tickets as permits to visit the championship's host cities and those in the European part of Russia, including Kaliningrad and Yekaterinburg, on a free-of-charge basis."

...

http://www.insidewor...-world-cup-fans

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Kuban Krasnodar fans protest 2018 World Cup hosting snub

By Andrew Warshaw

October 8 - Fans of Russian Premier League club Kuban Krasnodar have written to both Russian President Vladimir Putin and FIFA boss Sepp Blatter protesting that their city was not chosen as one of the host venues for the 2018 World Cup.

The southern city of Krasnodar, which boasts two clubs, FC Krasnodar and Kuban, in Russia's top flight, was overlooked last week when FIFA and Russia 2018 selected the 11 cities that will host the 32-team tournament.

Saransk, the smallest of the contenders and with little football tradition, was considered an outsider but made the list at the expense of Krasnodar.

"We would like to express our outrage regarding the decision to exclude Krasnodar from the list of host cities for the 2018 World Cup," the Kuban fans said in an open letter addressed to Putin, Blatter and Russia 2018 chairman Vitaly Mutko.

"We also express our mistrust in those officials who had been in charge of picking the host cities.

"There is no other city in Russia where the number one sport is as popular as it is here.

"Despite the fact that Krasnodar's population is only 750,000 and our club has never won any major trophies, our 30,000-seat stadium has always been filled to capacity.

"

http://www.insidewor...up-hosting-snub

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Arena-2018 gears up for major work

(FIFA.com) Thursday 11 October 2012

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© LOC

A working meeting took place in Moscow on 10 September 2012 between management of theRussia 2018 Local Organising Committee, Arena-2018 and Charles R. Botta, FIFA's leading consultant on stadium construction and design. The meeting focused on mapping out collaboration between Arena-2018 and the FIFA technical group responsible for monitoring timetables and schedules for the design, construction and reconstruction of stadiums for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™, as well as for monitoring compliance with FIFA requirements.

At the meeting, representatives from Arena-2018 presented their most up-to-date information on the design and construction of stadiums for the FIFA World Cup. Those attending discussed the monitoring of stadium preparations ahead of the tournament.

"Arranging accountability and communication between all sides is a key issue in our work because, during the design and construction process, the Host Cities will be asking a huge number of questions, and it's very important for us to speak the same language," explained Botta. "I'd like to say that I was really impressed with the outcome of the meeting. The Russia2018 Local Organising Committee and Arena-2018 have made excellent preparations and started this important work.

In December 2012, representatives and consultants from Arena-2018, along with experts from FIFA's technical group, will be paying inspection visits to the tournament's Host Cities. And the following month, January 2013, they will present their first joint report to FIFA.

"We already have things we can present to FIFA. Five of the stadiums for the tournament are already under construction: Spartak Moscow's arena and the stadiums in Sochi, Kazan, Saransk and St Petersburg," said Botta following the meeting. "In terms of the objectives facing all the people involved in the process, at this stage I would say it's about the Host Cities accepting Arena-2018 as their partner in getting the stadiums ready for the tournament."

Russia, like any country, has its own construction assessments and procedures,” he continued. “The lines of communication need to be put in place with the cities, and then it will be easier to make sure that the interests of all sides are taken into account, while observing FIFA's timetables and requirements. That's how it was in Germany and in South Africa, that's how we're working at the moment in Brazil, and I'm sure that we'll also be able to do the same in Russia."

Arena-2018 was founded by the Russia 2018 LOC in April 2012. The organisation is responsible for monitoring the design, construction and rebuilding of the stadiums and ensure that FIFA requirements are met.

http://www.fifa.com/...newsid=1783138/

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Russia may simplify visa regulations for 2018 World Cup

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Image via elbrustours.ru

Oct 21, 2012

MOSCOW, Russia - Russia law makers would considering more simplified visa regulations for foreigners related to the 2018 World Cup, a travel industry union said Sunday.

A bill has been presented to the State Duma, or lower house of the parliament for the visa-free discussion, Russian Union of the Travel Industry said.

The bill allowed foreign citizens involving in organizing and conducting the World Cup and the 2017 Confederations' Cup to skip the consular procedures and fees related to the visas, Yury Barzykin, Vice President of the union told local media.

Meanwhile, certain kinds of foreigners, especially those participating in the games, could enter Russia during the competition period without getting a visa if certain documents are provided in advance, the bill suggested.

Moreover, the bill would give certain foreigners the right of free travels between Russian host cities of the World Cup. For example, a ticket to a game of the World Cup could be taken as a "travel document," Interfax news agency quoted Barzykin as saying.

The bill, if approved by the State Duma, would help boost the sports tourism in Russia during the World Cup years and encourage more sports fans and travelers to visit the country, Barzykin said.

Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said previously that Russia would speed up preparations for the World Cup following the unveiling of the 11 host cities.

The International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) and Russia last month announced 11 host cities of the World Cup, which include Kaliningrad, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Saransk, Samara, Yekaterinburg, Rostov-on-Don, Volgograd and Sochi.

Russia pledged to hold "a high quality championships" with full-scale preparation works, Mutko said.

http://www.eturbonew...-2018-world-cup

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Host cities study Poland's EURO 2012 experience

(FIFA.com) Monday 29 October 2012

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© LOC

Between 23 and 27 October, senior representatives from the regions and cities which will be hosting the FIFA World Cup Russia™ visited Poland's UEFA EURO 2012 host cities: Warsaw, Wroclaw and Gdansk. The delegation was in Poland to gain experience of how to organise a major football tournament.

This was the first working visit since the Host Cities for the 2018 FIFA World Cup were announced in late September. The trip gave representatives of the Russian cities the opportunity to talk to their Polish counterparts at seminars and meetings, and also to ask questions about tournament preparations.

The Russian delegation also visited the tournament stadiums, the venues for the fan fests, the training bases and hotels where players and guests stayed during EURO 2012, major transport hubs and other tournament infrastructure.

A key aspect of the visit was a seminar in Warsaw, entitled "From the European Championships to the FIFA World Cup - Poland's experience". The seminar was attended by the head of the EURO 2012 office in Poland, Dariusz Buza; the director of the office for security and crisis management, Ewa Gawor; a Polish deputy foreign minister, Beata Stelmach; the chairman of the PL.2012 association, Marcin Herra; and representatives of companies involved in the planning and staging of the tournament.

"We're very pleased to welcome representatives of the 2018 FIFA World Cup host cities toPoland, and to share our experience of hosting EURO 2012. We will be happy to help our Russian friends in every way as they prepare for the World Cup, and we will give their endeavours our wholehearted support," said Beata Stelmach, one of Poland's deputy foreign ministers.

This visit forms part of the process of studying the experience accumulated by Poland and Ukraine in planning and staging EURO 2012. Representatives of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Host Cities had previously been to Poland and Ukraine just before and also during the tournament.

http://www.fifa.com/...8975/index.html

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Kaliningrad Launches $29 M World Cup Design Contest

The Russian city of Kaliningrad announced a $29 million design contest Wednesday to plan the city’s arena for the 2018 World Cup, an adviser to the regional governor told RIA Novosti.

The local government in the Baltic Sea exclave had originally planned to do the design work in-house on an $11 million budget, but decided to invest more after being confirmed as a host city last month and finding that the federal sports ministry would cover around 70 percent of the costs, the aide said.

“When we made it into the list of hosts for the World Cup, the financial conditions changed along with that,” said Pavel Pogrebnyakov, the regional governor’s World Cup advisor.

“We found out that the Sports Ministry would add financing and that the money for projecting will be shared out in different proportions. On Tuesday, we opened a competition again for the stadium project and the area around it.”

The winning bidder will have up to a year and four months to turn in a design, far less than the three years and three months for the winning bidder in a similar $30 million tender launched by fellow host city Nizhny Novgorod last week.

The stadium will be required to seat 45,000 people, but can be reduced to 25,000 after the tournament.

The arena and surrounding area will also play host to offices, shops and conference centers after the World Cup.

Kaliningrad’s regional sports minister has previously said the stadium could also host Rugby World Cup games in 2023 if Russia’s bid to host the tournament is successful.

http://en.ria.ru/spo.../177084594.html

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World Cup 2018 Stadium Relocated

MOSCOW, November 2 (R-Sport) - The World Cup 2018 stadium in the Russian city of Samara is to be built on a different site to the one visited by FIFA officials before FIFA approved the city to host the tournament, the local government said Friday.

Samara is one of 11 host cities after three others were dropped in September.

A $29 million tender to design the stadium posted on a state contracting website states that the 45,000-seater stadium will be near the airport rather than on the island the FIFA delegation visited.

The price has increased to around $430 million, which is $100 million more than regional deputy governor Alexander Nefedov said last month, and more than double the figure of $180 million widely mentioned in Russian media in late 2010, after Russia was awarded the tournament.

The original site had been variously criticised for being far from city transport links and hotel accommodation, ruining a river view and requiring port traffic to be rerouted.

A tender to design the arena there was canceled by regional governor Nikolai Merkushin in July, after the visit, when he said the cost estimates were not transparent.

The new site is near a major highway and the city airport.

Most of the host cities are far ahead of Samara in their preparations, with construction work well under way on new stadiums in Moscow and St. Petersburg, while building has even started in the little known city of Saransk.

http://en.ria.ru/spo.../177146843.html

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It's amazing how slow the works have been done in St. Petersburg, in contrast with Kazan, Sochi and even Spartak Moscow stadiums, thoose are moving really fast.

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Sad news :(

Russian worker killed at site of 2018 World Cup stadium

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

By Duncan Mackay

Kazan_World_Cup_stadium.jpg

November 13 - A Russian builder was killed today after a crane collapsed at the construction site of the 2018 FIFA World Cup stadium in Kazan, local authorities said.

The 25-year-old man was using the crane as a platform to carry out work when the part he was standing on detached and sent him falling 35 metres to his death.

"At 2.40 Moscow time on November 13 at the site of the under-construction football stadium on Chistopolskaya Street in Kazan, the boom of a crane broke off," the regional Investigative Committee said in a statement.

"As a result, a 25-year-old builder died."

Last month, a 48-year-old steel worker was killed at the site of the new Spartak Moscow stadium, another World Cup stadium.

The arena in Kazan will host football at next year's Universiade Games and will serve as the home ground of local club side Rubin Kazan.

insideworldfootball

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Russia shapes up its preparations for 2018

(LOC) Tuesday 20 November 2012

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© LOC

The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ is continuing to take shape, with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) officially submitting to FIFA on 20 November the concept for hosting the key matches of its flagship event.

During the LOC Board meeting in Saint Petersburg, Moscow was proposed to stage the Opening Match, one semi-final and the Final at the Luzhniki Stadium. It was also proposed that the second semi-final would be held at Saint Petersburg’s stadium, which is currently being built on Krestovskiy Island.

The Venice of the north, as Saint Petersburg is often called, was also put forward as the venue for the Opening Match and FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017 decider. Together with Spartak Stadium, Kazan and Sotchi, four venues have been proposed to host the 'Festival of Champions' in June 2017. The FIFA Executive Committee will now review the proposals at its next meeting in Tokyo on 14 December 2012.

“Proposing Moscow and Saint Petersburg, the cradle of Russian football by the way, as the stage for the key matches of these two major FIFA events is an important operational decision for the LOC. It is part of our milestone achievements, and our preparations are already in full swing. We look forward to the validation of our suggestions in December so we can continue our mission,” said LOC Chairman and Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, who chaired the meeting along with FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke and LOC CEO Alexey Sorokin.

While preparations for its own major events are continuously picking up pace, Russia plans to provide its citizens with a taste of what they can expect in 2017 and 2018 by hosting the first FIFA Fan Fests on Russian soil during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™. The first conceptional ideas were discussed during today’s meeting, and further discussions will now follow with the potential host cities in the next few months to decide on the best options.

“To be able to be part of a FIFA World Cup in your home country is a very special and rare opportunity. The FIFA Fan Fests in 2014 will be an appetizer of what Russians and the world will experience in 2017 and 2018. It is fantastic to see the great excitement among the host cities and the Russians already,” said the FIFA Secretary General, who added: “We are well on track but at the same time we have a long way to go as there are many tasks to be fulfilled and a great deal of infrastructure to be created here in Russia to prepare the perfect stage for the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the FIFA Confederations Cup one year earlier.”

Arena 2018, the appointed stadium monitoring branch of the LOC, also provided an initial overall stadium update following the host city announcement on 28 September 2012. Five FIFA World Cup stadiums (Kazan, Saint Petersburg, Saransk, Sochi, Spartak Stadium) are already under construction and another four (Ekaterinburg, Nizhny Novgorod, Rostov-on-Don, Volgograd) will be launched for the design stage by the end of this year. The remaining three stadium projects will be launched early next year at the latest.

Furthermore, the LOC reported on its cooperation with the FIFA World Cup host city regions to assess hotels and training sites as well as to identify potential locations to serve as team base camps during the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Also discussed was the sales process for the sponsorship packages and the TV rights particularly related to the Russian market as well as the creation of the official emblem and the official slogan. For the development of the official marks, the visual postcards of Russia, the LOC and FIFA are discussion ideas on how to involve the Russian population in the creative process.

Today’s meeting concluded the official events for 2012 in Russia, although the LOC will continue its knowledge management mission at the Official Draw for the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013 in São Paulo on 1 December 2012. Other major milestones for the LOC in 2012 included attending the stadium management workshop for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Fortaleza, as well as participating in the 2014 stadium inspection visits.

Next year, the LOC plans to actively participate in the observer programme at the Festival of Champions, as the FIFA Confederations Cup is known, taking place in six Brazilian host cities from 15 to 30 June 2013.

The board, whose role is to jointly govern the preparations for Russia 2018 together with FIFA, is scheduled to convene next in October 2013 in Kazan.

FIFA

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  • Luzhniki Could be Demolished - Sports Minister
    177616388.jpg
    MOSCOW, November 20 (R-Sport) - Moscow's iconic Luzhniki Stadium could be demolished and rebuilt from scratch for the 2018 World Cup, Russia's sports minister told R-Sport on Tuesday.
    The 80,000-capacity arena, built in 1956 and refurbished for the 1980 Summer Olympics, is the venue for the final of the football extravaganza in six years' time.
    Officials have said it needs considerable upgrades ahead of 2018, but Vitaly Mutko admitted for the first time on Tuesday that authorities are considering leveling the Soviet behemoth and starting over.
    "The Moscow city government has not yet examined the concept completely," Mutko said. "There is the refurbishment option, but that's very tricky, from a technical point of view."
    "You know that sometimes, modernizing arenas can be more expensive than building all over again. There is the demolition option. We'll see what Moscow decides soon enough."
    Mutko said Luzhniki, which also hosts the opening ceremony and, most likely, one of the semifinals, currently falls short of FIFA's "tough" demands on fan comforts, capacity, hospitality, and media facilities.
    Luzhniki is one of 12 existing or planned stadiums in 11 cities to be used for the World Cup.
    http://en.ria.ru/spo.../177616295.html

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Russia 2018 to Attract More Visitors than Brazil

177668605.jpg

Alexei Sorokin

© RIA Novosti. Alexander Utkin

15:50 22/11/2012

MOSCOW, November 22 (R-Sport) - Russia is set to attract more fans from abroad than South Africa did in 2010 or Brazil will in 2014, organizers for the 2018 edition said Thursday.

Alexei Sorokin, head of the organizing committee, said up to 1 million foreign supporters were expected to attend the games in 11 cities.

"It's hard to predict the exact figures until the draw is made," Sorokin said. "But we are expecting very good attendances."

FIFA had assured Sorokin's team that "more foreigners will come to Russia than traveled to South Africa and will travel to Brazil," and Sorokin explained why.

"It's not far from South America, Asia is our neighbor, and Europe's right next door," he said.

Sorokin said foreign fans are expected to make up one-third of the overall stadium audiences.

About half a million supporters traveled to South Africa in 2010 - far fewer than originally expected - while Brazil has said it expects upwards of 600,000 visitors in 2014.

RIA NOVOSTI

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Saint Petersburg will host opening amd closing matches in Russia's Confed Cup 2017, Sochi, Kazan and Moscow's Spartak Stadium will be the other venues...

I will rather to see a brand new stadium insted of only renovating Luzniki :lol:

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Flare Spat Won't Affect Russia 2018 - Minister

177568677.jpg

Anton Shunin

© RIA Novosti. Vladimir Fedorenko

13:34 24/11/2012

MOSCOW, November 23 (R-Sport) - Russia's sports minister insists the country's World Cup 2018 plans won't be blown off track by a controversial flare-throwing incident that has shaken Russian football to the core.

Champions Zenit St. Petersburg are appealing a default 3-0 defeat handed down by the Russian FA after their league match with Dynamo Moscow was abandoned when Dynamo goalkeeper Anton Shunin was injured by a flare thrown from the crowd.

It brought football hooliganism under the spotlight once again in a country that is preparing to stage the sport's marquee event in 2018, but Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko called for calm.

"This cannot influence the 2018 World Cup," he said in televised comments. "It affects the image of the country - everything we do affects the image of our country. But on the issue of organizing the World Cup, here we can be absolutely calm."

Zenit's general director Maxim Mitrofanov has threatened to pull the club out of the championship over the decision, which also saw the club fined and ordered to play two home games behind closed doors.

Dynamo were also fined and told to play one game without spectators.

Referring to the Shunin incident, FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke said in St. Petersburg earlier this week that "I can assure you nothing like this will happen at the World Cup."

Police have arrested a female fan they suspect of throwing the smoke bomb that injured Shunin.

The Russian government is trying to push through legislation that would toughen sanctions for football hooligans.

RIA NOVOSTI

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Bomb Squad Called to World Cup Arena

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Spartak stadium (archive)

© RIA Novosti. Ramil Sitdikov

20:37 26/11/2012

MOSCOW, November 26 (R-Sport) - Bomb squad officers have been called to the site of a World Cup 2018 stadium in Moscow after construction workers found an object thought to be an unexploded aerial bomb.

The device was found less than 300 meters from the Spartak stadium’s south stand during work to build the 43,000-capacity stadium.

“A device similar to an aerial bomb has been found,” a statement on the stadium’s official website said.

“Stadium employees are awaiting the arrival of specialists in defusing aerial bombs. A police cordon is around the bomb.”

Work on the stadium had not been interrupted, the statement said.

Moscow was bombed by the German air force during Second World War battles near the then-Soviet capital in late 1941 and early 1942.

Last month, a construction worker at the site died in a fall.

The arena in northwest Moscow is scheduled to be completed next year, and has been proposed as a venue for the 2017 Confederations Cup.

RIA Novosti

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