2018 FIFA World Cup
The 2018 FIFA World Cup was an international football tournament contested by men’s national teams. It took place between 14 June and 15 July 2018 in Russia. The finals involved 32 teams, of which 31 came through qualifying competitions, while as the host nation Russia qualified automatically. 64 matches were played in 12 venues across 11 cities. At an estimated cost of over USD 14. 2 billion, it was the most expensive World Cup to date.
About 2018 FIFA World Cup in brief
The 2018 FIFA World Cup was an international football tournament contested by men’s national teams. It took place between 14 June and 15 July 2018 in Russia. The finals involved 32 teams, of which 31 came through qualifying competitions, while as the host nation Russia qualified automatically. 64 matches were played in 12 venues across 11 cities. At an estimated cost of over USD 14. 2 billion, it was the most expensive World Cup to date. France won the match 4–2 to claim their second World Cup. Croatian player Luka Modrić was voted the tournament’s best player winning the Golden Ball. England’s Harry Kane scored the most goals during the tournament with six. The choice of Russia as host was controversial. Issues included the level of racism in Russian football, human rights abuses by the Russian government, and discrimination against LGBT people in wider Russian society. Russia’s involvement in the ongoing conflict in Ukraine had also prompted calls for the tournament to be moved, particularly following the annexation of Crimea. Allegations of corruption in the bidding processes and concerns over bribery on the part of the Russian team and corruption by FIFA members for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups led to threats from England’s FA to boycott the tournament. FIFA appointed Michael J. Garcia, a US attorney, to investigate and produce a report on the corruption allegations. Although the report was never published, FIFA released a 42-page summary of its findings as determined by German judge Hans-Joachim Eckert.
Eckert’s summary cleared Russia and Qatar of any wrongdoing, but was denounced by critics as a whitewash. Greg Dyke called for a boycott of the World Cup and David Bernstein called for the re-examination of the affair. In an interview on June 7, 2015, Domenico Scala, head of FIFA’s Audit Committee, stated that there should be evidence that the awards only came because of the votes of Qatar and Russia, and that the leadership of FIFA only bought the votes because of a lack of confidence in Eckert’s independence. In June 2015, the FBI confirmed that federal authorities were investigating the bidding and awarding processes for the World Cups for the 2014 and 2022 tournaments. The FIFA Executive Committee convened in Zürich on 2 December 2010 to vote to select the hosts of both tournaments. Russia won the right to be the 2018 host in the second round of voting. The PortugalSpain bid came second, and the that from BelgiumNetherlands third. England, which was bidding to host its second tournament, was eliminated in the first round. The voting results were: England, Russia, NetherlandsBelgium, and PortugalSpain. PortugalSpain came second in the vote, while that from England was eliminated from the bidding process in the third round. Belgium and Belgium came third in the voting results. The final was held at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on 15 July. It was the eleventh time the championships had been held in Europe, and the first time they were held in Eastern Europe.