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Ranking the Five Biggest Sports Stadiums in Russia

Russia has always been an incredibly passionate country that cares about how its athletes perform at major events. Between the Olympics, football, and other sports, Russians are always competing at the top end with sportsmen and sportswomen from Europe, the United States, and other parts of the world.

In recent years, Russia has made an effort to improve the aesthetics and capacity of its stadiums. While their venues do not match up to the huge NFL stadiums in the United States, there are many large venues in Russia as well. Below is a ranking of the five biggest sports stadiums in the country.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia

1. Luzhniki Stadium

The Luzhniki Stadium is the largest sporting venue in all of Russia. With a capacity of 81,000, the Grand Sports Arena of the Luzhniki Olympic Complex is also one of the nation’s oldest arenas.

Located in Moscow within the Luzhniki Olympics Complex, the stadium has hosted many famous sporting events in its history. This stadium was the venue for the UEFA Cup final in 1999, the UEFA Champions League Final in 2008, and other international sporting events.

During the 2018 World Cup, which took place in Russia, the Luzhniki was the host for seven matches, including the final. Several local teams use the stadium as their home venue, including main clubs from Moscow.

All of CSKA Moscow and Torpedo Moscow use the stadium for their home matches, including in the Russian league and in European competitions. On occasion, the stadium hosts non-sporting events like concerts.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia - Luzhniki, Moscow

2. Krestovsky Stadium (Gazprom Arena)

The Krestovsky Stadium is one of the newer sporting venues in Russia, as it was built in preparation for the 2018 World Cup that was held in the country. Featuring both a retractable roof and a retractable pitch, this St. Petersburg-based stadium is a true marvel of modern architecture.

A total capacity of almost 68,000, which can rise to 80,000 for concerts, makes the stadium the second-biggest sporting venue in Russia. That is why many matches take place at the Krestovsky Stadium, despite it being a relatively new venue.

The first game at this stadium was held in 2017 when FC Zenit St. Petersburg took on FC Ural. Veteran football star Branislav Ivanovic has the honor of scoring the first goal at the Krestovsky Stadium.

Significant matches in competitions such as the FIFA Confederations Cup, FIFA World Cup, and UEFA Euros took place at this venue. The Krestovsky Stadium is also slated to host the 2022 UEFA Champions League final.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia - Krestovsky Stadium (Gazprom Arena), Saint Petersburg

3. Volgograd Arena

Another football stadium, the Volgograd Arena is the third-largest sporting venue in the country. Located in the city of Volgograd, this ground was built on the site of the old Central Stadium.

A capacity of 45,500 means this ground can host some of the biggest capacity events in Russia. The Volgograd Arena was built in 2018 and hosted several matches in the 2018 World Cup.

Even though the stadium is an impressive architectural structure and the most modern sports facility in Volgograd, the Volgograd Arena does not get as much use as many Russians were expecting.

This stadium hosts games for the local Rotor Volgograd team, which does not have a significant reputation outside of Russia. Aside from Rotor Volgograd games, the stadium also hosts festivals, cultural events, and concerts.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia - Volgograd Arena, Volgograd

4. Otkrytie Bank Arena

The Otkritie Bank Arena, also called the Spartak Stadium, is a ground with a capacity of about 45,500 situated in the North-Western part of Moscow. One of the most well known football teams in Russia, Spartak Moscow, plays its home matches here.

Built due to the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the Otkritie Bank Arena is a relatively new stadium. The first event at the ground took place in 2014, which was more than four years after the 200 million euro construction project to build the stadium began.

This stadium hosted matches during the FIFA Confederations Cup in 2017, along with the FIFA World Cup in 2018. The round of 16 games between England and Colombia at the World Cup is the highest profile game hosted at this stadium.

Given the stadium is in a less densely populated part of Moscow, there is ample space outside the ground for fans to gather before and after matches. Spartak Moscow plays all its Russian league and European games at this ground, while other sporting, cultural, and musical events also take place here.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia - Otkrytie Bank Arena, Moscow

5. Ak Bars Arena (Kazan Arena)

Featuring the largest outside screen in the world, a capacity of over 45,000, and a sleek design, the Ak Bars Arena in Kazan is one of the most impressive new constructions in Russia.

Opened in 2013 to the tune of $450 million, the stadium hosted the opening and closing ceremonies of the Summer Universiade in 2013. The Kazan Arena was also selected for the 2017 Confederations Cup.

Not only is this stadium a top-class venue for sporting events, but it also hosts concerts, festive events, corporate events, and more. Visitors can enjoy highly-rated restaurants near the stadium, while tours of the Kazan Arena are available most weeks.

Football team Rubin Kazan, which has won two Russian championships in its history, plays its home matches at the Ak Bars Arena.

The biggest sports stadiums in Russia - the Ak Bars Arena (Kazan Arena), Kazan

Watch a Russian Sports Game in Person

If you are a fan of soccer, you may watch games from the Russian league on television every now and then. While experiencing the matches in this way is a lot of fun, you cannot beat the experience of being there in person.

With so many incredible and high capacity stadiums, along with the improving quality of the Russian league, attending a game has never been easier. If you have the means, spending a few days in Russia is a wonderful way to spend your vacation.

Between the history of Moscow, the stunning architecture of St. Petersburg, and the passion of Russian sports fans inside the Luzhniki or Krestovsky stadiums, you are likely to have an experience you will never forget.

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