MOSCOW, July 28. /TASS/. The Russia in My Heart gala concert devoted to Russian athletes’ achievements in 2018 has begun in Moscow’s Manezh Square.
Regardless of worsening weather, about 20,000 people have gathered to watch the concert in downtown Moscow, according to organizers.
The event is attended by medalists of the PyeongChang Olympic Games, members of ice hockey, figure skating, freestyle, short-track speed skating and skiing national teams alongside the footballers who made it through to the last eight at the Russia-hosted FIFA World Cup.
The audience will be treated to a musical performance by Russian pop stars. The stage is decorated as a football pitch.
Earlier on Saturday, Russian President Vladimir Putin presented the coaching staff and players of the national football team with state awards. The Russian team’s head coach Stanislav Cherchesov was bestowed with the Alexander Nevsky Order, while the Order of Honor was awarded to goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev and central defender Sergey Ignashevich. Honorary certificates were also given to other players and coaches.
This summer Russia hosted its first-ever FIFA World Cup, which kicked off in Moscow with a remarkable opening show at Luzhniki Stadium on the evening of June 14 and ended with a spectacular final match, played also at the Luzhniki Stadium, where France confidently defeated Croatia 4-2 to win the much-coveted World Cup Trophy.
The national football team of hosts Russia managed to make it to the quarterfinals stage of this world championship, where Croatia edged them out in a 4-3 penalty shootout win on July 7 at the Fisht Arena in Sochi.