Russia – A success for world football

by Ryan Duggins

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

Yes, and I say that as a proudly English fan of football, of which you would expect the same hilarious spitting of ‘FIFA bias’ that you will no doubt be consuming over the next few days. But however way you look at it, the decision to announce Russia to host the 2018 World Cup was not a decision based on a grudge of any sort.

And even if I am wrong, and that the committee members of FIFA had been effected by The Sunday Times and BBC Panorama’s allegations, the result of such a back lash was probably the best result for not just football, but for International relations and Russia’s infrastructure in general.

Russia is the largest country on the planet, with a population of almost 142 million people, and as the last ten years have shown, they are absolutely beginning to thrive on Football, as their domestic competitions become more exciting and talented, which in turn as spurned some wonderful displays from Zenit St Petersburg and the like in the European competitions. Although Russia are warming, they are not quite there yet when it comes to appreciation of Football, but with the application of the biggest, most decorated competition the sport has to offer, that support will only enhance Russia’s own footballing stand point.

Because the scent of Russia emergence as a major player was potent enough for FIFA to sniff out, themselves as an organising body, one of which we are all too aware of that are committed to the cause of attaining as much money as they can, are tapping into an unrivalled market, where literally millions of people will be swayed over the edge to the side of the sport, thus creating a new land, if you will, for FIFA to plant its seeds into.

Although our instincts tells us that Russia will not succumb to the demands of FIFA, as their industrial history will tell us, this will not be the case for 2018. Russia will be fully contempt to fulfilling every single wish that FIFA will conjure, to aid their own attempt to warm their public to a very lucrative sport. This is something that England could not fulfil.

Away from football, Russia have significant difficulty in connecting with the rest of the world. Their size, their history and their current government have made it very hard for them to not feel that they are their own planet, self assembled and self reliant. A festival of football, a competition that will lure fans from all over the globe to Russia, a place where they would never had thought of vacating to. The positive light that Russia will be gifted through a FIFA World Cup will give a country in desperate need of positive appraisal a needed boost, and a boost that will benefit all concerned.

The competition is also pushing Russia to completely renovate its current commuting links, as 14 new routes will be constructed throughout the country to aid connection links between the major countries, and although a lot can be said about the building of Stadiums as being a waste of time, the new plans to solve the many issues that Russian workers have in terms of travel is a great thing, and one that will benefit the country years to come.

Then you have the benefits in terms of dated ideologies towards racism and discrimination that is always well document in that part of the world, as surely the fact that the news of hosting the competition will be completely championed throughout the cities in Russia, means that social stances are sure to change.

Russia need this a lot more than we do, don’t they? The difference is that a World Cup here would be an English World Cup, supported by Fifa, where as the winners competition will be a FIFA held tournament, with Russia kindly offering the ground in which to play it on. Although I am not a snob, imagine yourself as a life long supporter of a lesser established footballing nation, lets say Venezuela, for arguments sake.

A gruelling qualifying campaign has forced you to the edges of your sanity, but you made it to England 2018, and begin to lust over the prospect of watching your team play in the most exciting competition the world has ever known.

Then you check the fixture list, and see that you have a few days in Middlesbrough to look forward enjoy your festival of football

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  • dexylongshot

    I won’t be going. In fact I am seriously considering retireing from England watching duty after the next Euros. It may sound like sour grapes but I generally believe The world cup should have been given to us, I fear for all the talk about it pulling Russia together and be brilliant for football in their country, as a spectacle, it wouldn’t of matched our effort, ah well, that’s that, i’m of for a Vodka and Stout.

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