Russia will host the 2018 FIFA World Cup after its bid for the competition won the FIFA Executive Committee vote, held in Zurich this afternoon.
This will be the first time Russia has hosted the tournament.
Speaking of the decision, Russian Prime Minister, and former President, Vladimir Putin, was delighted. He explained why he felt the Russian bid deserved to win:
“… Russia deserves to host the World Cup. Remember that Russians played football even during the Second World War, even in Leningrad during the siege. And that, I think, speaks volumes. It shows how our people feel about sport in general and football in particular. It shows that sport has always been something our people leaned on for support, and I am sure that we can organise this work properly.”
The voting today saw Russia the clear leader, with the second placed bid being that of Spain and Portugal – who submitted a joint bid – followed by the Netherlands and Belgium’s joint bid. England were eliminated at the first round of voting.
Also decided today, FIFA World Cup 2022 will be held in Qatar.