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Controversies over Russia’s TV-rights for FIFA Cups to be soon settled

May 24, 17:08 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15

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MOSCOW, May 24. /TASS/. An issue regarding the rights of the Russian television to broadcast matches of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup and, perhaps of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, will be soon settled, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Mutko told TASS on Wednesday.

Earlier, a conglomerate of state-owned Russia’s Channel One and VGTRK, and Match TV (owned by Gazprom-Media), refused to buy the broadcasting rights for the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the 2017 Confederations Cup at $120 million. The price is nearly four times higher than the $32 million that the Russian channels paid for the broadcasting rights of the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

"We will settle this issue in the near future, at least regarding the Confederations Cup, but perhaps regarding the World Cup as well," Mutko, who is also the president of the Russian Football Union (RFU), said in an interview with TASS.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino paid a visit on Tuesday to the Russian southern city of Krasnodar, where he met with Mutko and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"We spoke about Russia’s preparations for the World Cup and FIFA highly assessed our work and expressed satisfaction with the way we are implementing this project," Mutko said. "We also discussed the issue of broadcasting rights."

"It is certainly not for President (Putin) to deal with such issue, but we have discussed our concerns," Mutko added.

Russia is currently in full-swing preparations for the global football tournaments after the country clinched the bid, following the final vote held in Guatemala on December 4, 2010 at the FIFA Congress. The victory came following a tight race against the bids from England, Portugal and Spain, in addition to a joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.

The country selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.

The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 above-mentioned cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital of Moscow.

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, St. Petersburg Stadium, Fisht Stadium in Sochi and Kazan Arena in Kazan.

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