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2018 FIFA World Cup

Ronaldo 1 Messi 0 in World Cup duel

MOSCOW: Cristiano Ronaldo has emphatically won the first round of his World Cup duel with eternal rival Lionel Messi -- revelling in the adulation after his dramatic hat-trick while the Argentine flopped against Iceland. Messi knew he…

Putin welcomes World Cup as Russia win

MOSCOW: Russia welcomed the world to the soccer World Cup on Thursday as fans streamed in, the hosts savored a 5-0 victory on the pitch and President Vladimir Putin’s government derided Western efforts to isolate him. The Kremlin leader,…

Ronaldo primed for likely last shot at World Cup glory

SOCHI, RUSSIA: Cristiano Ronaldo will launch his latest and probably last attempt to crown his career with a World Cup winners medal when European champions Portugal face neighbors Spain in their opening World Cup game here on Friday.…

Saudi says foiled plot to bomb World Cup qualifier

RIYADH: Saudi authorities said Sunday they had foiled a plot to bomb a football stadium during a World Cup qualifying match and dismantled two "terrorist" cells linked to the Islamic State group. The interior ministry said in a statement…

Russia chooses wolf as 2018 FIFA World Cup mascot

MOSCOW: Russia has chosen a goggled wolf as mascot for the 2018 World Cup. The wolf, unveiled to the public early Saturday after a month of online voting, prevailed over a cat and a tiger dressed in a space suit after receiving more than…

Messi makes scoring return, Brazil sink Ecuador

MONTEVIDEO: Lionel Messi scored the winning goal on his return from a short-lived international retirement on Thursday as Argentina defeated Uruguay to take control of South America's 2018 World Cup qualifying race.