MOSCOW - Russian President Dmitry Medvedev
called Sepp Blatter on Sunday to thank the FIFA chief and his
executive board for awarding Russia the right to host the 2018
"Russia will stage the World Cup at the highest possible
level," Medvedev was quoted by the official Kremlin website
as telling the FIFA president.
"The (2018) tournament will be a clear indication of FIFA's
new philosophy - to develop football around the world."
Blatter, in turn, thanked Medvedev for his interest in the
world's most popular sport, saying Thursday's vote in Zurich had
clearly followed the policy of FIFA's executive board.
"(Russia's win) is a great achievement and FIFA looks
forward to full cooperation with Russian partners in organising
the World Cup," the Kremlin website quoted Blatter as saying.
FIFA's decision to award the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to
Russia and Qatar respectively has received a mixed reaction
around the world, with some making accusations of corruption
within football's governing body.
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin rejected the
allegations during his media conference in Zurich on Thursday,
saying Russia "won a tough and fair fight".
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