Construction on one of the stadiums that will be used to stage matches during the 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia is one month behind schedule, according to general contractor PSO Kazan.

The 45,000-capacity stadium in Samara will host four group matches during next year’s international football tournament, as well as one round-of-16 game and a quarter-final.

The project has been hit by a series of delays and, unlike many other venues that are being built for the World Cup, does not yet have a pitch in place. The Russia 2018 World Cup will take place from June 14 to July 15.

Sergei Ponomaryov, deputy head of PSO Kazan, confirmed the delay, but said he remains confident that all major work on the stadium will be finished by the end of the year – the venue’s initial completion deadline.

“We would have liked a faster construction pace,” Ponomaryov said, according to the Reuters news agency. “We have calculated that we are behind by about 30 days.”

Nikolai Merkushkin, governor of the Samara region, has also spoken out about the delay in construction, blaming poor weather in the local area as the main reason for the project being behind schedule. He also said work will be “back on track” by next month.

The latest comments come after Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Mutko last month said there was “no doubt” that the venue would be finished in time for next year’s tournament. Mutko was quoted by the TASS news agency.

Image: Олег Максимов