World Cup 2018 stadiums: Complete guide to all 12 venues in 11 Russian cities

The 2018 FIFA World Cup kicked off on June 14, and for next month or so, the soccer world has taken over Russia. Sixty-four matches will take place over 12 venues in 11 cities as 32 teams fight for the right to be named champions of the world. Of the 12 stadiums built or renovated to the World Cup, Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow and the Saint Petersburg Stadium will be used the most. Each venue gets a minimum of four games. The lights, the facades the scenery, the designs for each of these stadiums are incredibly stunning.

Consider this a complete guide to every venue for this summer's tournament.

Ekaterinburg Arena (Central Stadium) in Yekaterinburg

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  • Founded: 1957 (renovated from 2006-2011)
  • Capacity: 35,696 during World Cup; 23,000 after World Cup
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Ural Yekaterinburg
  • World Cup games: Four group stage matches.

Yekaterinburg is the fourth-largest city, located in central Russia right where Europe and Asia meet. As you'll notice in the image above, there are bleachers on both ends built into the stadium. Those will be gone after the tournament. This venue will host four group stage games: Egypt vs. Uruguay on June 15, France vs. Peru on June 21, Japan vs. Senegal on June 24 and Mexico vs. Sweden on June 27.

Kaliningrad Stadium in Kaliningrad

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  • Founded: 2018
  • Capacity: 35,212 during World Cup; 25,000 after World Cup
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Baltika Kaliningrad
  • World Cup games: Four group stage matches.

Kaliningrad faces the Baltic sea and is bordered by Lithuania and Poland. It's the closest venue to the Europe. It plays host to the following group stage games: Croatia vs. Nigeria on June 16, Serbia vs. Switzerland on June 22, Spain vs. Morocco on June 25 and England vs. Belgium on June 28.

Kazan Arena in Kazan

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  • Founded: 2013
  • Capacity: 45,379
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Rubin Kazan
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and two knockout round matches.

The city of Kazan is located about 500 miles east of Moscow. If you look at the image above, you'll notice reflective panels on the side of the stadium. That's actually an LED facade -- the largest outdoor screen in Europe. It hosts the following matches: France vs. Australia on June 16, Iran vs. Spain on June 20, Poland vs. Colombia on June 24, South Korea vs. Germany on June 27, a round of 16 match on June 30 and a quarterfinal match on July 6.

Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow

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  • Founded: 1956
  • Capacity: 81,000
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: Owned by government (CSKA Moscow, Spartak Moscow and Torpedo Moscow used to play there)
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and three knockout round matches.

Located in Moscow, Luzhniki Stadium is the biggest stadium in Russia. It's been renovated three different times since hosting the 1980 Summer Olympic Games and will play host to the World Cup opener on June 14 and the final on July 15. It also hosts the following five games: Germany vs. Mexico on June 17, Portugal vs. Morocco on June 20, Denmark vs. France on June 26, a round of 16 match on July 1 and a semifinal match on July 11.

Otkritie Stadium (Spartak Stadium) in Moscow

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  • Founded: 2014
  • Capacity: 45,360
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Spartak Moscow
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and one knockout round match.

This is the second venue in Moscow and it plays second fiddle to the government-owned Luzhniki Stadium. It's named after Spartak Moscow, the tenant and it plays host to all the Russian national team games. It hosts the following World Cup games: Argentina vs. Iceland on June 16, Poland vs. Senegal on June 19, Belgium vs. Tunisia on June 23, Serbia vs. Brazil on June 27 and a round of 16 game on July 3.

Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Nizhny Novgorod

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  • Founded: 2018
  • Capacity: 44,899
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Olimpiyets Nizhny Novgorod
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and two knockout round matches.

Nizhny Novgorod is located about 420 miles west of Moscow. How new is this stadium? It was one of the stadiums built specifically for this tournament and it wasn't built in time for the Confederations Cup last year. It plays hosts to the following matches: Sweden vs. South Korea on June 18, Argentina vs. Croatia on June 21, England vs. Panama on June 24, a round of 16 match on July 1 and a quarterfinal match on July 6.

Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don

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  • Founded: 2014
  • Capacity: 45,000
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Rostov
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and one knockout round match.

Not to be confused with Rostov (that's a different place), Rostov-on-Don is located in the southern portion of Russia, and just 350 miles north of Sochi. It plays hosts to the following games: Brazil vs. Switzerland on June 17, Uruguay vs. Saudi Arabia on June 20, South Korea vs. Mexico on June 23, Iceland vs. Croatia on June 26 and a round of 16 match on July 2.

Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg

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  • Founded: 2017
  • Capacity: 67,000
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Zenit Saint Petersburg
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and three knockout round matches. 

Krestovsky Stadium, otherwise known as Saint-Petersburg Stadium for the World Cup, hosted the Confederations Cup final between Germany and Chile. It is home to Zenit Saint Petersburg, one of the most successful Russian clubs in the last 10-plus years. The venue is on Krestovsky Island facing the Gulf of Finland  and its most attractive feature is a retractable roof. It plays host to Morocco vs. Iran on June 15, Russia vs. Egypt on June 19, Brazil vs. Costa Rica on June 22, Nigeria vs. Argentina on June 26, a round of 16 match on July 3, a semifinal match on July 10 and the third-place match on July 14.

Cosmos Arena (Samara Arena) in Samara

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  • Founded: 2018
  • Capacity: 44,918
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Krylia Sovetov Samara
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and two knockout round matches. 

Located in the southeastern part of European Russia, Samara is the sixth-largest city in the country. It's one of the newer stadiums that opened a year after the Confederations Cup. It plays host to Costa Rica vs. Serbia on June 17, Denmark vs. Australia on June 21, Uruguay vs. Russia on June 25, Senega; vs. Colombia on June 28, a round of 16 match on July 2 and a quarterfinal match on July 7.

Mordovia Arena in Saransk

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  • Founded: 2018
  • Capacity: 44,442 during World Cup; 30,000 after World Cup
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Mordovia Saransk
  • World Cup games: Four group stage matches.

If you think this stadium looks eerily similar to South Africa's Soccer City stadium, showcased during the 2010 World Cup, you're not going crazy. Home of Mordovia Saransk, the Mordovia Arena broke ground in 2010 and was modeled after the South African stadium. It was actually scheduled to be built before Russia was awarded the World Cup. It hosts Peru vs. Denmark on June 16, Colombia vs. Japan on June 19, Iran vs. Portugal on June 25 and Panama vs. Tunisia on June 28. 

Fisht Olympic Stadium (Fisht Stadium) in Sochi

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  • Founded: 2013
  • Capacity: 41,220 during World Cup; 40,000 after World Cup 
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: Owned by government 
  • World Cup games: Four group stage and two knockout round matches.

Sochi, known for hosting the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, is a resort city in southeastern portion of European Russia. Located near the coast of the Black Sea, Fisht Stadium is the southernmost venue of the tournament. It plays host to Portugal vs. Spain on June 15, Belgium vs. Panama on June 18, Germany vs. Sweden on June 23, Australia vs. Peru on June 26, a round of 16 match on June 30 and a quarterfinal match on July 7.

Volgograd Arena in Volgograd

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  • Founded: 2018
  • Capacity: 45,568
  • Surface: Grass
  • Home club: FC Rotor Volgograd
  • World Cup games: Four group stage games.

The industrial city of Volgograd is located 600-plus smiles southeast of Moscow. Volgograd Arena replaces Central Stadium which was shut down and demolished in 2014. It plays host to the following group stage games: Tunisia vs. England on June 18, Nigeria vs. Iceland on June 22, Saudi Arabia vs. Egypt on June 25 and Japan vs. Poland on June 28.

For a complete list of World Cup stadiums in Spanish, visit our sister site, CNET.com.

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