Sunday, 22 July, 2018

Blatter, ex-FIFA president, meets Russia's Putin at World Cup

St Petersberg Over 1 mln people attend World Cup fan festival in Russia - Xinhua | English.news.cn
Domingo Copeland | 21 June, 2018, 19:52

The former FIFA President Sepp Blatter has said that he believes England or a joint United Kingdom and Ireland bid deserve to host the 2030 World Cup.

"Fifa has taken note of Mr Blatter's visit to Russian Federation", a Fifa spokesperson told BBC Sport.

At the moment, too busy schedule does not allow Vladimir Putin to visit the matches of the 2018 world Cup.

Blatter, who led the organisation for 17 years, is serving a six-year ban for unethical conduct after FIFA's global corruption scandal in 2015.

No charges have yet been brought and Blatter has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.

Blatter was hosted Wednesday by Russian World Cup organizers and watched from a hospitality suite as Cristiano Ronaldo scored the winning goal. "They should say "yes, come in".and then everyone would be happy".

"I feel a little abandoned because I am suspended, but I am still the elected president". "I'm still president, but suspended", he said. "Thus, the World Cup is adding new audiences to the regular football fans", he added.

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Russian Federation is holding its first time ever edition of the FIFA World Cup, which kicked off in Moscow with a spectacular opening show at the Luzhniki Stadium on the night of June 14.

"I had the impression it was my World Cup ... that time has not stopped since I went to the last one in Brazil", he said, smiling.

"Football should not be dominated by politics".

Every four years, the world comes together for a festival of football (soccer for Americans) that promises to make us forget all about the world's troubles for a few weeks and unite in our collective humanity. "Football should help, perhaps, to solve political problems", he said.

"There will be a lot of contenders (for 2030) but they will deserve it, and Scotland, Wales and the Irish - why not? - should be in, too, because that would be a better candidate for a 48-team World Cup".

More than 3,500 of the more than 10,000 counterfeit 2018 World Cup tickets available globally have been sold to Chinese football fans, according to Chinese media.

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