SOCHI, May 3. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has wished success to the national squad in the forthcoming FIFA World Cup matches and expressed the hope that all players will display remarkable willpower and determination to fight to the bitter end.
As he addressed the observer council at a meeting of the Russia-2018 organizing committee, Putin said that this summer Russia would welcome "the best of the best, the world’s most talented footballers," but "the eyes of Russian fans will be riveted to the performance of the national team."
"We all hope that our footballers will play at full capacity and display willpower and determination to fight to the bitter end and the fans will see the kind of game they love and appreciate," Putin said.
"I believe it will be right and proper to wish success to our players and the coaches," he added.
World Cup matches will be held on June 14 - July 15 at 12 stadiums in eleven cities across Russia - Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan, Sochi, Nizhni Novgorod, Samara, Kaliningrad, Yekaterinburg, Saransk, Volgograd and Rostov-on-Don.
In the opening match Russia will clash with Saudi Arabia. In the group stage Russia will also play vs Egypt on June 19 and Uruguay on June 25.