It turns out however that at least some prominent football fans tend to put their trust into facts and personal experience rather than heed dire predictions and grim speculations.
Famous French football fan Clément Tomaszewski, more known by his alias ‘Clément d’Antibes,’ told Sputnik France that he intends to attend the 2018 World Cup in Russia and sees no reason to fear this event.
According to d’Antibes, while some Russian football fans did indeed commit violent acts, it would be wrong to assume that all Russian fans are like that, not to mention that there are plenty of football hooligans in other countries as well.
"It depends. Of course during Euro 2016 in Marseilles I saw, along with everyone else, that some Russian football fans wreaked havoc. It was wrong, such things shouldn’t happen as it was, after all, aggression; it was clearly an organized group that came there to start a fight… But Russian football fans aren’t the only ones. And I’ve been to 236 football matches played by the French national team, and visited 39 countries since 1989. A couple of times I was at the stadium next to foreign fans, and I almost never had any problems with them," d’Antibes said.
He also dismissed concerns and rumors about Russian football hooligans allegedly planning to unleash a wave of violence upon foreign football fans during the World Cup 2018, adding that Russian law enforcement agencies are competent enough to deal with any problems that may arise during the event.
"The last World Cup was held in Brazil, I stayed there till quarterfinals as we (then) lost to Germany. You should not wear eye-catching chains and big expensive watches when you walk outside in the evening; you need to act modest. I am not afraid of Russia. As you already know, I’ve been to Korea and South Africa, where you need to stick to European neighborhoods and stay alert, that’s all. But that’s not something to be afraid of, because otherwise I should’ve just stayed at home in front of a TV… A new issue has emerged and it is not a football fan problem but rather a threat of terrorist attacks. But we know it for certain that Russian police do their job very well," d’Antibes concluded.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup will be held at venues in more than 10 Russian cities in June and July 2018. The event will be the first-ever World Cup to take place in Eastern Europe.