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Football | Europa League

Kazan to play Atletico in Moscow

Rubin Kazan will host holders Atletico Madrid in next month's Europa League last 32 tie at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium because of the extreme cold conditions in the Volga region during that time.

"It's true, Rubin will use our stadium for the match against the Spanish team on February 21," Luzhniki spokesperson Angela Biryukova told Reuters on Thursday.

The first leg will be played in Madrid on February 14 while the return match in Moscow is scheduled for the following week.

It will be the third year in a row that Rubin have chosen Luzhniki's artificial turf for their Europa League last 32 tie because of the cold and the poor quality of the grass pitch in Kazan during the Russian winter.

It should be a good omen for Atletico, who beat fellow La Liga side Athletic Bilbao in last season's final, because the Russians lost both of their previous ties played in Moscow.

Rubin lost to Greece's Olympiakos Piraeus on aggregate last year while the year before they were knocked out by Dutch side Twente Enschede despite playing at Luzhniki with temperatures hovering around minus 15 Celsius.

Rubin picked the southern city of Krasnodar as an alternate venue in case the weather would be too cold in Moscow.


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