FIFA World Cup 2018: The Biggest Challenges Facing Russia

Photo Credit

With less than a year to go until Russia hosts one of the biggest sporting events one the planer, the FIFA World Cup, now seems like a good opportunity to discuss some of the challenges facing the event. After all, this is a country that is never far away from all sorts of major news stories. So, here are four of the greatest difficulties that people are concerned about before the first kick-off.

Stadiums

The previous two World Cups in South Africa and Brazil were mired in controversy when it came to the conditions involved in the building of the stadiums and how they would continue to be used after the event. Russia has tried to learn from their mistakes, and the 12 stadiums are now either complete or close to completion. However, questions have been raised about the conditions faced by the workers. And the legacy is still an issue, as many of the stadiums look like they will be rarely full in the coming years, particularly the ones located in remote and difficult-to-reach regions.

Team Bases

The size of Russia will certainly pose an issue to many of the teams and the fans as well. Many of the bases will require air travel to get to the nearest stadium. But the Russian government has done their best to spread the World Cup legacy away from just the main tourist centres, and the geography of the country was always going to pose a problem.

Fan Experience

With so much negative publicity regarding Russia in western media outlets, they will certainly be on a charm offensive to give fans the best experience possible. The front-line volunteers, police and paramedics have all been given English lessons and free travel is being offered in between stadiums for ticket-holders. However, this is a country that is very unused to having such a high volume of foreign visitors come all at once. And Russian football has often been mired in racism controversy, something that prominent anti-racism campaigners like Dr Moshe Kantor have spoken out against.

Security

Europe has been a hotbed of security issues in the last few years in particular, and an event on the scale of the World Cup is always going to require extremely tight protective measures. The country has already had a ‘warm-up’ for the event with the Confederations Cup, during which they were able to try out their airport-style security measures. However, with such a wide array of matches to police at the same time, there are always going to be challenges involved in an event of this nature. Not only this, there were a lot of violent scenes involving Russian fans at the last major football even, Euro 2016 in France.

There is no doubt that next year’s World Cup is an event that Russia desperately want to go well, but these are some of the challenges that they will have to overcome in order to host an event that lives long in the memory for the right reasons.

Editor

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *