Alexei Smertin, the 2018 FIFA World Cup ambassador, visits the Luzhniki Grand Sports Arena

Alexei Smertin, the 2018 FIFA World Cup ambassador, visits the Luzhniki Grand Sports Arena
The former football player says that the renovated arena meets all international standards.

Alexei Smertin, the 2018 FIFA World Cup ambassador and former captain of the Russian football national team, has visited the Luzhniki Grand Sports Arena. The renovation of the championship’s main stadium is due to be completed shortly.

I was emotionally overwhelmed and could not help feeling excited, a feeling, which always accompanies me every time I am on the field. The stadium has come to be a very comfortable and cosy place, now that the seats are closer to the field,” Alexei Smertin said.

Alexei Smertin

The former football player expressed his opinion about the designers’ decision to move the entrance to the players’ changing rooms from the corner of the stadium to its centre. “The entrance to the changing rooms used to be in the corner of the stadium. After the renovation, the entrance will be moved to the centre of the arena , which is, undoubtedly, a good solution,” the ambassador noted.

He also praised the comfort of the new changing rooms and stressed that the renovated arena meets all international standards.

Currently, some equipment at the stadium is being assembled. “Construction work at the stadium has been completed. We are about to finish all work, and final preparations are being made before the arena can be used by football players,” head of the facility’s construction oversight department Murat Akhmadiyev said.

In early March, the first 2018 FIFA World Cup facilities were opened the accreditation centre and the entrance control pavilion.

The Luzhniki Grand Sports Arena is to host the opening match of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and its finals.