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Features

Energy giant Lukoil buys Spartak Moscow and World Cup stadium

Energy giant Lukoil has acquired Russian Premier League FC Spartak Moscow football club and its Otkritie Bank Arena home ground.

Financial details were not published, but Lukoil said it has acquired 100% of shares in the top-tier club and its assets.

The acquisition comes as Russian football clubs continue to be impacted by their ban from FIFA and UEFA competitions due to the country’s invasion of Ukraine, while Spartak has its sponsorship deal with Nike terminated in May.

The Lukoil deal brings to an end Leonid Fedun’s ownership of the club after 18 years, with the tycoon having relinquished all his managerial roles at Spartak.

Lukoil said it plans to implement a number of strategic initiatives aimed at improving the club’s management system and develop the club’s infrastructure.

Initial plans include relocating the club’s Fedor Cherenkov Academy from Moscow to nearby Tushino. The group will also finance the construction of a multipurpose sports complex and hotel for athletes and fans in Tushino.

Lukoil said it will create a more transparent and collegial decision-making mechanism, with the involvement of professionals with successful experience in the sports industry.

In a statement, Lukoil said: “The company believes that these initiatives, coupled with steady sponsorship support by Lukoil and other partners of the club will reinforce Spartak’s competitive position and lead to new victories.”

The 45,000-capacity Otkritie Bank Arena was built in 2007 and staged five 2018 FIFA World Cup games, including the last-16 game between England and Colombia.

Spartak reached the last 16 of the Europa League last season but was then expelled from the competition after Russia’s commencement of military action in Ukraine.

Image: mos.ru / This file is licenced under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Licence / Resized