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Football World Cup

Russia’s fairytale World Cup run ends in tears

MOSCOW:The impassioned shouts of "Ros-si-ya" died away on the streets and tears filled the stadium as Russia bowed out of their home World Cup in the cruellest fashion: on penalties. The men in red exceeded the wildest expectations by coming within a penalty kick and a save against Croatia of making it into the semi-finals for the first time since 1966. They lost the quarter-final shootout 4-3 after extra-time ended with the sides deadlocked at 2-2 in the Black Sea resort of Sochi. It was that close -- and it all…

England expects as dark horses Belgium launch World Cup campaign

VOLGOGRAD, Russia: England open their World Cup campaign on Monday seeking to banish memories of dismal performances in recent tournaments as Belgium's "Golden Generation" kick off as dark-horse challengers. England, winners on football's biggest stage more than half a century ago, crashed out without a win four years ago in Brazil, and have not won a knockout match in any tournament since 2006. Gareth Southgate's team will be eager to start with a bang after world champions Germany slipped up in their opening match…

US warns Americans of terrorism threat at World Cup in Russia

WASHINGTON: The U.S. State Department warned Americans on Friday that terrorists may target World Cup venues in Russia, which is hosting the month-long soccer tournament, but it did not point to any specific threat. “Large-scale international events such as the World Cup present an attractive target for terrorists,” the department said in a travel advisory. “Although security for the World Cup will be extensive, terrorists may seek to attack event locations such as stadiums and Fan Fest viewing areas, tourist sites,…

Russia hopes to stir World Cup crowds with musical spoons

Move over vuvuzela players. The musical instrument to master for this year’s soccer World Cup is the Russian spoon. Eight years after South Africans blared away on their plastic vuvuzela horns when they hosted the contest, Russians are hoping fans at the tournament it hosts starting on Thursday will celebrate by clacking their “lozhkas” - spoons that beat out an insistent, but quieter rhythm. Folk musicians using the traditional instruments - two wooden spoons held back to back and struck by a third - have already…

Russia ready to welcome the world, says FIFA chief Infantino

Russia is “100 percent ready” to host the World Cup, FIFA president Gianni Infantino said on Wednesday as he addressed concerns about racism, human rights and security in the host country a week before the tournament begins. Russia will host the tournament from June 14 to July 15 in 12 stadiums spread across cities including Moscow, St Petersburg and Sochi and Infantino believes that supporters are in for a real treat. “I think we can say that Russia is 100 percent ready and the whole world will actually see it when we…

Argentina cancel final World Cup warm up game against Israel

BUENOS AIRES: Argentina have canceled their final World Cup warm-up match against Israel scheduled for this Saturday in Jerusalem, striker Gonzalo Higuain said on Tuesday. “They’ve finally done the right thing,” Higuain said in an interview with ESPN, confirming reports the game had been canceled following political pressure. The match in Jerusalem’s Teddy Kollek Stadium was to be Argentina’s final game before they kick off their World Cup campaign in Russia on June 16. The match against Israel had drawn criticism…

Fans should burn Messi shirts if he plays in Jerusalem -Palestine

RAMALLAH, West Bank: The Palestine Football Association chief urged fans on Sunday to burn pictures of Argentina striker Lionel Messi and replicas of his shirt if he plays against Israel in Jerusalem next weekend. Twice world champions Argentina will play at Jerusalem’s Teddy Kollek Stadium on Saturday night in a World Cup warm-up match that has attracted huge interest among the Israeli fans, mainly because of Messi’s planned participation. But the Palestinians are not happy that the match will be held in Jerusalem and…

Football World Cup: Nigeria’s kit sold out minutes after release

The Football World Cup is around the corner and international teams have already released their official World cup kits. The kits are produced for the fans worldwide so they can represent their favorite teams. One team in question is doing everything right. Team Nigeria’s World Cup kit was sold out in a matter of minutes! The futuristic-looking green and white kit Designed by Nike pays “subtle homage to Nigeria's '94 shirt, with its eagle wing-inspired black-and-white sleeve and green torso," the kit makers…

Pogba in Makkah ahead of World Cup

RIYADH: French midfielder Paul Pogba has posted a video of himself at the holiest site of Islam in Saudi Arabia, as he prepares to join his French squad for the World Cup next month. "Only the person that comes here can understand the feeling," the 25-year-old Manchester United star said in an Instagram video from the holy city of Makkah. Allah u akbar .God is the greatest 🙏🏾🕋 A post shared by Paul Labile Pogba (@paulpogba) on May 21, 2018 at 1:42pm PDT "This a beautiful place -- beautiful, beautiful,…