MOSCOW, November 13 (RIA Novosti) — Russian Minister of Sport Vitali Mutko told sports news agency RSport.ru that Russia waged an honest campaign for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and that now it’s time to get back to work in preparing for the event.
Commenting on FIFA’s announcement, made Thursday, Mutko told RSport.ru that “Russia has waged an honest campaign. We worked to convince the members of the executive committee, and all of the commissions, based on the fact that Russia is a reliable partner in world sports, and that we fulfill our obligations.” The Minister added that he is “glad, that the investigation has been concluded. I think that we will not be returning to this topic again. We will simply [focus on] preparing for the World Cup.”
The Minister’s comments follow an announcement made earlier today that a FIFA investigation into possible corruption concluded that no serious breaches had been detected in the selection process for the 2018 and 2022 World Cup events.
Mutko also noted that Russian preparations for the 2018 FIFA World Cup will be methodical and coherent, despite challenging economic and political circumstances, RSport.ru said. The Minister noted that “we will simply continue to prepare to carry out the World Cup…in difficult conditions, both economically and politically. We will be preparing methodically, and will do everything in order to make our work accessible, open and transparent,” the Minister said.
Russia won its bid for the 2018 World Cup in 2010, beating out bids from England, Spain/Portugal, and Belgium/the Netherlands. The 2018 World Cup will be the country’s first. Russia recently unveiled the tournament’s logo, which was presented by cosmonauts at the International Space Station and projected onto Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre.