It seems like Russia is doing their best to prepare for welcoming the 2018 World Cup. Alexey Sorokin as head of the local World Cup 2018 organizers said that the two biggest stadiums in Saint Petersburg and Moscow have been 85% ready. To the forum at the FIFA Congress in Mexico City, Mexico, he also gave information about the other seven stadiums that will be completed soon. The head of Russia’s 2018 World Cup Committee insists that preparations are in line with the schedule, although there are still some stadium infrastructures and transport constructions are prepared. They are quite optimist that they will not be late. They have a lot of infrastructure, and one of the biggest facilities to be considered is transportation.
Meanwhile, Colin Smith as Director of the FIFA competition said that there is monitoring of infrastructure projects in Russia by experts of the football world. According to Sorokin, there are, indeed, technical problems such as the breaking of several cranes in Samara or the problem of excess water at the Stadium in Kaliningrad, but the road construction is still done well.
As we know, it is the very first opportunity that is given to Russia to become the host of the 2018 World Cup. We also know that the last couple of years, the preparation has become the major consideration of the Russia government. Something that not all of us know is the fact that behind a beautiful building and a comfortable stadium to greet the guests, we can also find the other facts which are quite surprising. What are the things that you probably do not know about the preparations to welcome the greatest event in the world of football? Here are the facts that might surprise you.
A Stadium which are built on the swamp
In Kaliningrad, one of the cities being pointed out as the host of the next World Cup event, the concerned parties decided that an island which is located between two rivers in the center of the big city was the most appropriate place to build a stadium with a capacity of 45 thousand seats. It would, indeed, become a brilliant idea, only if there were no swamps with a depth of the swam reaches up to fifty meters. Any attempt to drain and build such a big stadium on it always ends in failure, considering the fact that the water will certainly come back. The stadium was finally built on the pillars. A total of 25 thousand pillars were then installed on the ground with the plate facing upwards. Besides, there is also a consequence of building a stadium here. The quantity of the seats should be reduced, from 45 thousand based on the first plan, to 35 thousand. For your information, in the summer, this phenomenal stadium is prepared to facilitate at least five matches in the preliminary round.
Moscow was rebuilt
For several years, the capital city was full of potholes covered by fences. The life of the people in Moscow turned into hell when it was aggravated by the sounds of reconstruction and road repairs. The reconstruction covers 119 roads in total. Five thousand old buildings were destroyed and a metro line on the ground was built. It seems that some parties in the city council believe that nothing is impossible. If you have not been to Moscow yet after a while, you will be definitely surprised.
The Zenit Arena was finally completed
The Zenit arena is known as one of the most expensive and longest established sports infrastructure projects in Saint Peterburg. Nobody wants this development to take up to nine years, but the deadline keeps being postponed. As a result, the stadium became a legend even before the inauguration. There is some speculation on the Internet and TV about why its development lasts such a long time.
The secret to Zenit Arena’s high cost is finally revealed. The stadium was completed in 2017, and the costs increased significantly from 6.7 billion rubles to 43 billion rubles. It was almost similar to the cost of Wembley Stadium in London.
The Minister of sport learns to speak English well
Most of us probably still remember that the former Russian Sports Minister, Vitaly Mutko, became a subject of internet memes back in 2010, right after he gave a speech or a Russian bid presentation to host the 2018 World Cup. The phenomenal words were “Let me speak from my heart,” After giving that line, he continued his English with a thick Russian accent. And now, the former Russian Sport Minister has become the Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister of Sports Affairs.
Afterwards, internet users also discovered that his assistants specifically wrote speeches in Cyrus (the Russian alphabet) for Mutko because his English proficiency was very bad, but that did not make things better. The sentence was widely spread and Mutko’s ability in speaking English is immortalized through songs that we can find on YouTube. Because of this condition, the minister finally decided to learn how to speak English appropriately.
His effort can be seen in 2015, when he successfully managed to explain the situation and what was happening in regard to the World Cup preparation in just a single sentence: “Is very good temp, open new stadium, no problem, no criminality”. Soon after saying the utterances, he mixed up the Russian with English. What makes it interesting is the fact that for the minister’s birthday, he was awarded an English study book by Russian President, Vladimir Putin. Finally, a couple of years later, the well-known minister admitted that he had learned the language and the book Putin gave him just “by its cover” and then decided to move on to learning another language, Spanish.
Many unpleasant street shops were condemned
In order to maintain the beautiful scenery, all the cities which will become the host of the game have been ‘cleansed’ from street kiosks, shopping spaces, and bus stops that are considered to be aesthetically unpleasing. In the second home town of Gérard Depardieu, Saransk, about 50 dachas (Russian villas) were destroyed. In addition, you can find that the kiosks in Moscow which are located outside the metro station – where people can buy anything, from display to panties – disappeared in just a single night. In modern Russian history, there has never been a destruction with such a ‘passion’ like this.
Factory operations were temporarily suspended
During the 2018 World Cup, the host cities will become the safest place on earth. In pursuing this goal, even a very high loss of value will not be considered as a serious obstacle – for a month, all large companies classed as “dangerous producers of production” are instructed not to operate. Even the productions of animal woof are asked to be temporarily stopped.