This could be great news for the people of Donbass and possibly coach Mircea Lucescu as well. Shakhtar is reported to consider returning to Donbass within months after two-year exile.
According to information circulating broadly in Ukrainian and Russian media, Shakhtar Donetsk could return to Donbass Arena soon. Adjustments after war damages are set to take off early next year. They will supposedly take weeks rather than months because the overall structure of the stadium wasn’t challenged.
The return should come early enough to properly bid farewell to Mircea Lucescu. The Romanian coach arrived in Donetsk in 2004 and his contract could end in mid-2016. Recent reports suggest he already agreed to stay also for 2016/17 campaign, but StadiumDB understands it’s not a signed deal at this point.
The Donetsk-based club had to relocate in 2014, having played the last game on May 2 of that year. Later Donbass Arena suffered from war damages on a couple occasions and became a hub for humanitarian aid distribution.
Since 2014 Shakhtar played home games in as many as 6 temporary stadiums. So far the most important one has been Arena Lviv with 25 fixtures (16,833 people on average). 4 games were played in the small NTK Stadion in Kyiv, further 2 in Kyiv’s Obolon Arena, while Slavutych Arena, Stadion Chernomorets and Tsentralnyi Stadion Cherkassy hosted one game each.