World Cup 2018 – Venues – Saint Petersburg Stadium
Saint Petersburg Stadium, also referred to as Zenit Arena, Krestovsky Stadium, and Piter Arena is the recently opened new stadium of FC Zenit. It got built at the site of the former Kirov Stadium.
Planning for the new stadium began late 2005, and first construction works started by the end of 2008. The stadium was initially planned to be completed in 2009, but works were hampered by a series of delays, including a redesign to comply with FIFA requirements and fraud investigations.
Saint Petersburg Stadium was initially to be funded by Russian gas firm Gazprom, however after they pulled out the project was taken over by the St. Petersburg city government. Works finally sped up in 2016 and the stadium was completed in April 2017, however, overall costs had soared past $1 billion, which made it one of the most expensive stadiums ever built.
The first official match at Saint Petersburg Stadium was played on 22 April 2017 when Zenit hosted Ural for a league match (2-0).
The stadium has been designed by Japanese architecture firm Kisho Kurokawa and resembles the form of a spaceship with the roof held up by four masts. It has some similarities with that of the Japanese Toyota Stadium, which was designed by the same firm.
Saint Petersburg Stadium is going to be one of the playing venues of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, during which it will host four first round group matches, a quarter-final, a semi-final, and the match for third place. It also hosted four matches during the 2017 Confederations Cup, including the final.
The capacity of the stadium has been reduced to 56,196 for regular league matches but will be increased to around 68,000 for the World Cup.
The stadium will host seven games at the world cup Morocco v Iran, Russia v Egypt, Brazil v Costa Rica, Nigeria v Argentina, a round of 16 game plus a semi-final and the third-place match.
Re-live a classic 🇺🇸USA 1994 encounter between 🇳🇱Netherlands and 🇧🇷Brazil, as part of our latest #WorldCup Rewind series
— FIFA World Cup 🏆 (@FIFAWorldCup) 13 April 2018