Bad weather takes toll on Moscow soccer fields

Nov. 2, 2013 at 10:22 AM

MOSCOW, Nov. 2 (UPI) -- A Moscow soccer team whose field is in bad shape due, in part, to a long spell of rainy weather, refused to let a crosstown rival play a match on the field.

Lokomotiv Moscow this week turned down CSKA when the club asked to use Lokomotiv's stadium for its upcoming match with Spartak this month.

R-Sport reported Saturday Lokomotiv refused the request to preserve the turf for its own Nov. 28 Champions League match against German powerhouse Bayern-Munich.

CSKA's home pitch at Arena Khmiki has been battered by use and wet weather in Russia, which was aggravated by the switching of Russia's pro soccer calendar from summer to winter months to synchronize with western Europe's season.

The condition of the soccer fields in and around Moscow has become an increasingly urgent issue for the nation's soccer leaders because Russia will host the 2018 World Cup.

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