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MOSCOW, March 4. /TASS/. Russia has a special role to play in restoring confidence in the global governing body of football - the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), Russian Sports Minister and President of the Russian Football Union Vitaly Mutko said in his opening speech at the organization’s regular conference. He also emphasized that the upcoming 2018 FIFA World Cup may become a unifying tournament for world football.
Switzerland’s Gianni Infantino, 45, was elected the new president of FIFA on February 26 following the second round of voting, where he received the majority of votes from 207 eligible members associations. He is to carry out the endorsed reforms designed to bring the organization out of the crisis caused by the corruption scandals.
"Infantino’s election will make it possible for us to normalize the situation in FIFA and around world football. We’ve got a great deal of serious work in this direction ahead of us, and Russia is assigned a colossal role in this process. In fact, the 2018 FIFA World Cup will be the new president’s first major project, the gem in the crown of world football. It may be that this will be a unifying tournament. The odds are that the process of reforming FIFA and restoring full confidence in this organization will be completed by 2018. And this may happen here in Russia," Mutko said.