At Spartak, I was at home…

Amol Gokhale
Sunday, 17 June 2018

Although Luzhniki has its own aura, at the other stadium in Moscow, Spartak, I feel more at home

It’s been a week since I’ve been here in Russia to cover the 2018 FIFA World Cup and after a week, I’ve kind of set up my routine.

Wake up early, get ready, have breakfast and set out. There’s a bus stop at about 300 metres from the hostel where I’m staying, so I take a bus to the metro station.

I can’t help but appreciate the beauty of the metro station. The light strip on the floor starts blinking as the metro arrives. I get on the metro and after 15 minutes I enter the premises of the Luzhniki Stadium.

Although Luzhniki has its own aura, at the other stadium in Moscow, Spartak, I feel more at home.

The media centre is set up outside the actual stadium building and has everything, so I don’t have to keep shuttling between floors to get to the media cafe and my work station. 

Also, the media tribune, from where you work on a match day, are the best seats in the house, right next to the pitch, so be mindful of a misdirected kick. Observing the training session of Iceland team was such a pleasing sight. You can easily call for a player and he might just turn back!

As the games move thick and fast, I feel that I am left with no time whatsoever to explore this beautiful city of Moscow. So far, all I’ve seen is part of Red Square and a handful of mesmerising metro stations and a few structures from the outside. I think once the group stage is over and with break days in between, I should find some free time to explore.

Just like they say, ‘It’s an occupational hazard...’
 

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