23:45 GMT +322 June 2017
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at the St. Petersburg Arena ahead of the 2017 Confederations Cup opening match between the national teams of Russia and New Zealand

    Putin Thanks FIFA for Helping Russia in Arranging Confederations Cup

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    2017 Confederations Cup in Russia (19)
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday expressed gratitude to Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) for assistance in organizing the country's first FIFA Confederations Cup and assured that Russia was ready to hold the event on the top level.

    ST. PETERSBURG (Sputnik) – Putin also stressed Russia’s "responsibility and decisiveness to hold the Confederations Cup at the top level."

    "For the first time in history, our state, Russia, hosts the continents’ strongest teams. First of all, let me express gratitude to [FIFA President] Gianni Infantino for being committed to the sport ideals and for helping in the preparations of this landmark event," Putin said at the opening ceremony of the cup.

    Putin expressed confidence that the foreign visitors would see Russia as a welcoming and outward-looking state.

    The opening match of the FIFA Confederations Cup between Russian and New Zealand football teams has started in St. Petersburg.

    The Confederations Cup will be held from June 17 to July 2 in the Russian cities of Kazan, Sochi, St. Petersburg and Moscow. Besides Russia and New Zealand, Portugal, Mexico, Cameroon, Chile, Australia and Germany have also sent their national teams to participate in the cup.

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    2017 Confederations Cup in Russia (19)

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    2017 Confederations Cup, FIFA, Vladimir Putin, Russia
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