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Luzhniki Stadium building work gets underway

Luzhniki Stadium building work gets underway

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Renovation work has begun at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, which will act as the centrepiece of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Renovation work has begun at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, which will act as the centrepiece of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

The existing stadium’s outer shell will be maintained, but the structure will otherwise be completely rebuilt at a cost of US$800 million. Initial plans for a 90,000-seat venue were scaled back after FIFA, football’s global governing body, approved a more modest design with a lower budget.

“At the moment, seats and other internal elements are being dismantled,” Moscow City Hall’s construction department said, according to the R-Sport agency. The department said that preparations were being made for a tender on the building work for the planned 81,000-capacity venue.

The Luzhniki Stadium is set to stage the World Cup’s opening match, one semi-final and the final. The venue, which opened in 1956 and was refurbished for the 1980 Olympic Games, staged the 2008 UEFA Champions League final between Manchester United and Chelsea. It will not host matches during the 2017 Confederations Cup, the World Cup’s warm-up event, with the games set to take place instead in Spartak Moscow’s new stadium as well as venues in St Petersburg, Kazan and Sochi.