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Russian cities blast off official welcome campaign for 2017 Confederations Cup

December 21, 2016, 18:54 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup will be held at four stadiums in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi and Kazan

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© Sergei Bobylev/TASS

MOSCOW, December 21. /TASS/. All four Russian host cities officially kick-started a broad welcoming campaign for guests and visitors of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, the International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) said in its statement on Wednesday.

"Host cities of the upcoming FIFA Confederations Cup are getting ready for next year’s ‘Tournament of Champions’ with a unique campaign being rolled out in Kazan, Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Sochi," the statement from FIFA said.

"Information about the FIFA Confederations Cup, for which the best national teams in each continent are preparing in earnest, has appeared in airports and train stations in Kazan, Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Sochi," according to the statement.

"Multiple public transport vehicles - including buses, trolleybuses, trains between Moscow and Saint Petersburg and on the underground Moscow Metro Circle Line - will be dressed up in the memorable signature style of the tournament’s Host Cities," FIFA stated.

"The mascot of the Confederations Cup and the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia, the wolf Zabivaka, has been depicted on billboards and other advertising spaces, inviting locals and guests in the Host Cities to watch matches at the tournament," the statement said. "Colorful advertising media tell more about the teams and stadiums starring at the first edition of the FIFA Confederations Cup to be held in Russia."

The 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup will be held between June 17 and July 2 at four stadiums in Russia and they are Otkritie-Arena in Moscow, Zenit-Arena in St. Petersburg, Fisht in Sochi and Kazan-Arena in Kazan.

Seven nations have already qualified for the 2017 Confederations Cup and they are hosts Russia, 2014 FIFA World Cup Champions Germany, 2015 Copa America Champions Chile, 2015 AFC Asian Cup Champion Australia, 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup winners Mexico, 2016 UEFA Euro Cup winners Portugal and OFC (Oceania Football Confederation) Nations Cup winners New Zealand. The remaining eighth nation will be determined following the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.

The Draw for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup was held on November 26 in the Russian city of Kazan. Following the draw hosts Russia was placed in Group A alongside with Portugal, Mexico and New Zealand. Group B has brought together Germany, Chile, Australia and the winner of the Africa Cup of Nations.

The opening game will be held in St. Petersburg on June 17 between Russia and New Zealand. Russia will face Portugal in Moscow on June 21 and on June 24 it will play Mexico in Kazan.

After the group stage matches, two best teams from each group will clash in the semifinals, due to be held in Kazan and Sochi respectively. On July 2, Moscow will be the venue for the third-place match, whereas the final will be played in St. Petersburg.

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