Gazprom Arena


* Address: St. Petersburg
* Country: Russia
* Capacity: 67,000
* Opened: 2017
* Main use: Football
* Tenants: Zenit (football)

Extra stadium info – Gazprom Arena

The construction of the stadium started in 2007. Zenit became one of the first football clubs with a value of $100 million. It is known as the first Russian sports club with 1 million followers on its main social media page. Zenit won the top-flight league of Russia several times. In 2008, they won the UEFA Cup and the UEFA Super Cup. The Gazprom Arena hosted several matches for the FIFA World Cup in 2018. One of those matches was between the national football teams of Nigeria and the Argentine Republic. John Obi Mikel, who played numerous matches for the world famous English side Chelsea Football Club, played for Nigeria that day.

Hours before the football match, he was told that his father had been kidnapped and would be killed if he reported anything. The captain of the national football team of Nigeria received the shocking news as he travelled on the team bus to the stadium in St. Petersburg. A family member called him and told him that he had to call the kidnappers on a designated number. When John Obi Mikel did so, he was ordered to pay a ransom. His father was abducted in Nigeria when he travelled to a funeral. The police in Nigeria were able to secure his release after a gunfight. The father was tortured and he received emergency treatment in a hospital.

© Yuriy Smirnov

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