CSKA Moscow has announced that its home matches in the UEFA Champions League will be held at the Luzhniki Stadium instead of its VEB Arena home ground.

The VEB Arena has a capacity of 30,000, with the Luzhniki seating 81,000 people. CSKA did not disclose a reason for moving its upcoming the group-stage matches.

UEFA has approved the club’s request and CSKA will now play defending champions Real Madrid at the Luzhniki on October 2, before AS Roma and Viktoria Plzen visit the stadium on November 7 and November 27, respectively.

The Luzhniki is Russia’s national stadium and staged a number of matches during the recent 2018 FIFA World Cup, including the opening match and the final between France and Croatia. It also hosted the final of the 2008 Champions League final, which saw Manchester United defeat Chelsea on penalties.

CSKA moved into the VEB Arena in 2016 and the stadium was not used during the World Cup.

Image: Serge Stallone