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Russia gets Infantino approval over World Cup prep

Moscow (AFP) – FIFA chief Gianni Infantino told President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday he was satisfied with Russia’s preparations ahead of hosting the Confederations Cup in June and the 2018 World Cup.

“I’ve always been convinced that Russia will meet all of its obligations — now we can see the concrete facts,” RIA Novosti news agency quoted Infantino as saying in the southern city of Krasnodar in comments translated into Russian.

“As FIFA president — and what is more important as a football fan, I can invite the entire world to come to Russia to watch the Confederations Cup and the World Cup games and to discover this beautiful country,” he added after visiting the purpose-built World Cup arena in Krasnodar.

Meanwhile, Putin assured Infantino that Russia would strive to make sure the construction of the Confederations Cup and World Cup facilities was completed in time.

“We will do everything possible to make sure that the venues and the conditions for staying in Russia and everything related to serving a large number of fans, viewers and athletes is carried out at the best possible level,” Putin told journalists.

The president added that he considered developing the game further in Russia to be the primary objective of staging the global showpiece.

“The development of the game is one of the main ideas behind granting the right to host the World Cup to countries that still have goals to achieve and new standards to reach in the development of sport and football,” he said.

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