SC Olimpiyskiy

Kyiv, Ukraine | C.1923

Photo Credit: Kateryna Dmytriievа

The Olympic National Sports Complex (also known as Olympic Stadium) is the largest sports complex in Eastern Europe, located in the very center of Kyiv at the foot of Cherepanova hill. Its central part is a large sports arena with football pitch, athletic tracks and two-tiered stands for spectators.

Originally built in 1923 as the Red Stadium L. Trotsky, the stadium has been through multiple expansions and renovations as well as numerous names. The first renovation and expansion occurred in 1966 and 1967, when it was commonly referred to as the Central Stadium. The capacity was doubled to hold just over 100,000 attendees.

The name was changed again in 1996 to Olympic Stadium – referring to the 1980 Olympics – and two years later the stadium underwent a refurbishment and new seats were installed, which reduced capacity to about 83,000.

When Olimpiyskiy was selected to host the Euro 2012 final, another major round of renovation was required. This included the complete reconstruction of the first tier, the rebuilding of the entire West Stand, and the installation of a roof on the previously uncovered stadium. During the Championships, the stadium hosted three group matches, a quarter-final, and the final between Spain and Italy (4-0).

Until then, football club Dynamo Kyiv had only used the Olimpiyskiy for European cup matches, using the smaller Lobanovskyi Stadium for their league matches. They were initially unsure whether to completely move into the new Olimpiyskiy, but in the end were successfully lured. The team played their first league match at the renovated stadium on March 4, 2012 against Arsenal Kyiv (1-0).

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