The Cosmos Arena, also known as Samara Arena or Samara Stadium, is the recently opened football stadium in Samara which is the new home of FC Krylia Sovetov of the Russian Football National League, replacing Metallurg Stadium. The stadium was built to serve as one of the playing venues of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The arena boasts just under 45,000 seats, which are divided over two tiers. The most characteristic aspect of the Cosmos Arena is its 65.5 metres high dome roof, which is made up out of 32 panels. Samara authorities announced their design tender in late 2012 with cost estimated at $320 million.
The Cosmos Arena was initially planned to be built on the tip of a peninsula where the Samara and Volga rivers meet in the south of the city, where almost no settlements or infrastructure exist. There wasn't even a bridge leading there at that time. This caused criticism and so the stadium was relocated up north, to be built within city limits.
First plans for the new stadium were made around 2010, which became concrete when in 2012, the city of Samara got selected as one of the host cities of the World Cup. Works started in the middle of 2014, and following a small delay were completed in early 2018.
The Cosmos Arena opened on 28 April 2018 with a league match between Krylia Sovetov and Fakel Voronezh.
During the 2018 FIFA World Cup, the Cosmos Arena is scheduled to host four first round group matches, one round of 16 match, and one quarter-final match.
The first match at the stadium will be played on 17th June between the Group E teams, Costa Rica and Serbia. Group matches of Group C teams, Denmark and Australia will be played on 21st June. The stadium will also host the match for the home team Russia with Group A opponent Uruguay on 25th June followed by the last group match between Senegal and Columbia on 28th June.
The round of 16 match will be held on 2nd July between the winner of group E and runner-up of group F. The quarter-finals and the last match at this venue will be held on 7th July.