MX23RW : Thursday, September 20 01:38:04

Construction of World Cup stadium in Samara behind schedule

The construction of the Samara Arena has been delayed by multiple setbacks, despite the stadium hosting the first 2018 World Cup fixture in less than three months.

FIFA has revealed that the construction of the World Cup Stadium in Samara is drastically behind schedule.

There is under three months before the first World Cup group fixture between Costa Rica and Serbia, but no pitch has been laid out in the 45,000-seater venue.

The Samara Arena is one of 12 venues to host the World Cup in Russia this summer, but multiple setbacks have delayed the completion of the stadium.

"Over the course of this project, we have spoken about delays in Samara," FIFA chief competitions official Colin Smith told reporters.

"Those delays are still evident now even though a lot of progress has been made. There is a huge amount of work to be done.

"We would expect further progress than this, but what's important to us is that the stadium is commissioned on time, then we have the use of the stadium and we can install all our temporary overlay and equipment that we need for the World Cup."

The stadium is planned to host four group stage matches, a last-16 tie and a quarter-final.

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Germany's defender and captain Philipp Lahm (front-R) holds up the World Cup trophy as he celebrates on with his teammates after winning the 2014 FIFA World Cup final on July 13, 2014
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