MOSCOW - Russia's 2018 World Cup bid chief
has sent a letter to England's bid team hoping to put to rest
"any misunderstanding" between the two rivals.
"We've sent a letter of explanation to the English bid
officials," Alexei Sorokin, general director of the Russian bid,
told Reuters on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, England's bid team lodged a formal complaint
with football's governing body FIFA against Sorokin, accusing him
of making critical comments about rival bidders in a Russian
"It's no secret that London has the highest crime rate when
compared with other European cities, and the highest level of
alcohol consumption among young people," Sorokin was quoted as
saying in the Sport-Express daily earlier this month.
He later said his comments had been "misinterpreted and
"It wasn't a formal apology because I don't feel like I've
broken any rules," Sorokin said on Wednesday.
"I just expressed my regret over the whole thing, it was
just a misunderstanding. All of us in the Russian bid team have
a great deal of respect for our English colleagues and I'd like
to think they respect us as well," he added.
"I hope we can put this matter to rest for good now."
Russia and England are bidding for the 2018 finals along
with joint bids from Spain/Portugal and Belgium/Netherlands.
United States, Japan, South Korea, Qatar and Australia are the
candidates for the 2022 tournament.
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