FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who is seen as one of the most controversial figures in football right now, says that he is confident that Russia will host a great World Cup 2018. The nation has been awarded the right to host this tournament and there is a lot of scrutiny upon Fifa and Russia. This is due to the inconsistencies that have plagued the competition over the last few editions. Apart from the 2006 World Cup in Germany, Fifa have been unable to get most things right in the last two editions. The World Cup 2014 was especially plagued by a lot of construction issues.
Fifa has also been caught up in a corruption scandal. Blatter has once again been in the headlines after making a U-turn on his decision to step down from his presidency role. He has been the Fifa president since 1998. Even though the organisation has been immensely praised for the way it has transformed aspects like women’s football and under 20s football, aspects like the failure to adopt technology in the top-level game and allegations of corruption have hit them quite hard. The qualification stages will take place from next year and the groups are announced in a few weeks.
“Today is an important day in the long and winding road to the World Cup 2018. We are on track, Russia will be a fantastic host. It will be a wonderful moment for Russia, the rest of the world and for football. Hundreds of thousands of visiting fans will come to Russia for the first time in their lives and will be met with warmth, friendship and real Russian hospitality. We say ‘yes’ to Russia. Our support is especially important during the current geopolitical situation,” said Blatter. Many countries have opposed to Russia hosting the tournament due to the perceived racism in the country.