MOSCOW, January 12. /TASS/. Provocations against Russia on the part of UK and other Western media in the run-up to the 2018 FIFA World Cup will go on unabated and the only factor standing behind the British media attacks is jealousy over Russia’s hosting the Mundial, believes renowned Russian footballer and coach Valery Gazzayev.
At present, Gazzayev is a deputy chairman of the State Duma committee for sports, tourism and youth policies.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said earlier UK journalists had received overt instructions to produce acerbic stories about Russia before the World Cup, which is scheduled for June 14 through to July 15.
"A chain of provocations against Russia on the part of Western media, including the UK ones began in 2010 immediately after this country won the bid for hosting the 2018 Mundial," Gazzayev said. "Now they shoot a film slandering Russian football fans, then a UK newspaper published an article that doesn’t contain a single truthful word, and then provocations at stadiums begin all of a sudden."
"This exposes sheer jealousy on the part of the UK," he said.
"Full-scale injections of slanderous information on Russia have begun already now that the World Cup is getting closer," Gazzayev said.
There was a certain lull in the campaign during the Confederations Cup because organization there was immaculate and they did not have a pretext for pouncing, he said. Russia showed then the really high level it can hold large international tournaments at.
"But the UK media go on with this dirty propaganda today and they will be creating a smokescreen in the West right until the World Cup games begin," Gazzayev said.
"This was to be expected but still have a duty to prepare calmly for the largest global sports event," he said.
"Strong people and strong countries have been coming to grips with such situations throughout history and this [situation] proves once again our country is a power nation and President Vladimir Putin continues gaining popularity in world politics, Gazzayev said.