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Football legend Cafu launches 100-day countdown to 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup in Russia

March 09, 19:50 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Cafu, 46, was spotted on the streets of St. Petersburg on Wednesday giving away flowers to women
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© EPA/ENNIO LEANZA

MOSCOW, March 9. /TASS/. Two-time FIFA World Cup winner and Brazilian legend Cafu brought on Thursday the coveted Confederations Cup trophy to the pitch of the newly built football stadium in St. Petersburg to mark the launch of the 100-day countdown ahead of the global tournament in Russia this summer.

"This stadium is fantastic," Cafu was quoted as saying in a statement from FIFA. "It is a modern venue in a beautiful city hosting a very important tournament."

"I have great memories of the Confederations Cup," the Brazilian football icon continued. "It is a very competitive and short competition, which I am proud to have won. And of course, it is a great way for teams and hosts to prepare for the World Cup." 

Celebration events dedicated to the 100-day countdown to the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup were held on Thursday both in Moscow and St. Petersburg. Over 1,000 people took part in a dancing flash mob on Palace Square in Russia’s second largest city of St. Petersburg.

Cafu, 46, was spotted on the streets of St. Petersburg on Wednesday giving away flowers to women in sign of the celebration of the International Women’s Day, which is widely celebrated in Russia each year on March 8.

The Brazilian World Cup legend arrived in St. Petersburg to particularly attend the launch of the 100-day countdown before the 2017 Confederations Cup and visit the newly-built football stadium, which is now the highest football arena in Russia.

The FIFA Confederations Cup, which is also viewed by experts as a rehearsal a year prior to the FIFA World Cup, will be held between June 17 and July 2 at four stadiums in Russia and they are Spartak Stadium in Moscow, Zenit Arena in St. Petersburg, Fisht Stadium in Sochi and Kazan Arena in Kazan.

Participants in the 2017 Confederations Cup 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 champs Portugal, OFC (Oceania Football Confederation) Nations Cup victors New Zealand and 2017 CAF Africa Cup of Nations Champion Cameroon.

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

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