The chief agronomist of the NSC Olimpiyskiy: we had some loads during the pre-season, but now we are 100% ready for the season

The new football season starts soon. On July 18, FC Dynamo Kyiv will have an open training session and present their new kit. The chief agronomist of the NSC Olimpiyskiy Maxim Stelmakh tells if the pitch of arena is ready for the new season.

- Tell us about the condition of the pitch during the pre-season. Was it affected by some loads or weather?

- There was almost everything. We conducted some preparatory works after the Champions League final. But after that the BeLive festival took place at the stadium so we had to cover the grass for 4 days. In the summer, when it is very hot, it is quite a significant stress for the pitch. However, weather conditions helped us a lot. The temperature decreased, it was raining while covering. Therefore, the pitch was in good conditions after the festival. It was slightly damaged in some spots, but ok. We made a partial renovation of the pitch. The damaged grass was removed. We partially combed out the organics with brushes and then sowed seeds on the whole pitch, made sanding so that the seeds were fixed. Special fertilizers were added to provoke the growth of young shoots. The works began in early July, and now all the sprouts of young grass have risen. Our pitch is already ready to host matches. And it will be perfect in few days. All the work that we made, I'm happy. Even the fact that we had a festival did not affect the quality of the grass, and it will be in perfect condition by the beginning of the new season.

The NSC Olimpiyskiy hosted the Champions League final. What is the assessments of the pitch condition from the UEFA?

- We communicated constantly with representatives of the UEFA and representatives of the company "Propitch", which have been organizing the Champions League and the Europa League matches for the past 3-4 years. I read positive feedback about our pitch condition on the official Facebook page of this company, they were totally satisfied. Especially if we take into account that our grass is totally natural with no firmware or hybrids, artificial fibers or other technologies. There are different technologies: Desso or Fibersand. In both cases, artificial fibers are used to fix the grass. But it’s not our story. It is the first time in the recent years when the Champions League final was played on the pitch without any artificial insets. This is actually more difficult, because when there is a part of the artificial grass, the field is more firmly held and not so viscous. Therefore, UEFA and the representatives of "Propitch" appreciated this and were completely satisfied with the way we prepared the pitch. Still, given the fact that even in March we had bad weather conditions and a very busy schedule, in early April the pitch was marked as “B with minus”. And we had “excellent” in the middle of the May.

Is the NSC Olimpiyskiy ready for the new season?

- Absolutely! We are now 100% ready and can start.

Arena will host two big concerts in August, as well as football matches. How do you plan to cope with such loads and keep grass in good conditions?

- It’s not the first concert for us. We had the same situations, so everything is worked out. We will host Ocean of Elzy concert and will open the pitch immediately. We will have few days to recover it. Then it will be covered again for Imagine dragons concert. The procedure will be the same after it. The end of August and September is a favorable period for the growth of the grass, as the temperature will not be as high as in July and not as low as in November or December. This period is the optimal. The grass only needs water and a some fertilizers, and it will cope with everything, without our help.

It is to be recalled that FC "Dynamo" Kyiv will have an open training session at the main sports and cultural arena of Ukraine - NSC Olimpiyskiy - and present a new kit on July 18 at 6 p.m. The first match of the ULP championship of Ukraine FC "Dynamo" Kyiv V FC "Vorskla" is scheduled on July 25 at 7 p.m.

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The NSC Olimpiyskiy press service

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