UEFA Champions League Final Host City Positive News for Russia and Sochi 2014
UEFA, the governing body of European football, announced last week at its Executive Committee meeting in Ljubljana, Slovenia, that the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow was chosen to host the event, edging out a strong field of contending cities such as Sevilla, London, Rome and Berlin. The news reinforces Russia’s reputation for hosting high-level sporting events and strengthens their bid to welcome the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games to Sochi.
William Gaillard, UEFA’s Director of Communications & Public Affairs, commented:
“We feel that is important to move away from our traditional venues in Western Europe and the bid of Russia, with the Luzhniki Stadium, gave us an excellent alternative. We are sure they will do a good job in hosting the 2008 UEFA Champions League Final.”
Dmitry Chernyshenko, Sochi 2014 CEO, said: “The decision to host the event at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium reflects the international sporting community’s growing confidence in Russia’s ability to successfully stage such large-scale sporting events.”
Vladimir Aleshin, FC Torpedo Moskva owner and board chairman of Luzhniki Ltd, told Sport-Express newspaper: "This decision is recognition of the huge job that the Football Union of Russia, the Moscow authorities and the Russian government do for the development of not just Russian football but also the European game.”
The Luzhniki Stadium ground seats 84,745 and, in its former guise of the Grand Arena of the Central Lenin Stadium, it was the main venue for the 1980 Olympic Games, including the football final. The UEFA Champions League Final is widely considered as the most popular and successful club team competition in the world.