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FIFA’s Infantino says planning to attend matches of all 32 teams at World Cup

Gianni Infantino voiced the conviction that Russia was fully ready for the Mundial
FIFA president Gianni Infantino AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev
FIFA president Gianni Infantino
© AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev

MOSCOW, June 7. /TASS/. FIFA President Gianni Infantino said on Wednesday he planned to attend the matches of all the 32 teams that will take part in the FIFA World Cup 2018, which begins in Russia in a few days’ time.

He said he would be present at the opening game on June 14 at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow and would then attend the games in all the eleven Russian cities embraced by the World Cup schedule.

Infantino voiced the conviction that Russia was fully ready for the Mundial.

"I think we can say that Russia is 100% ready and the whole world will actually see it when we kick-off on June 14 with Russia and Saudi Arabia in the Luzhniki Stadium," he said.

Infantino also promised safety and hospitality to the fans coming to Russia.

"The Russian authorities are aware of the security situation in such a big event," he said. "They are working very hard […] to be fully ready to tackle any potential issue."

He added that the Russian organizers were closely cooperating with police officials from all the participating countries.

"Every fan that is coming to Russia will be welcome in a safe environment to celebrate," Infantino said, adding however that those who were eyeing trips to Russia in a hope to make trouble here should better stay home.

"Everyone will be able to witness how beautiful the stadiums are, how welcoming the country is, how the organization and the preparations will work out," he said, adding that this would be a great experience for all the guests of the World Cup.

He mentioned the Video Assistant Referees [VAR] system, which will be used at the forthcoming championship for the first time. Infantino felt confident that football was prepared to use VAR, saying the system had been trial-tested for two years.

He called it a good helper to the referees, saying they were entitled to assistance if an opportunity for it existed while the introduction of VAR would definitely add fairness to the game.