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:: Russia 2018 has all the ingredients to make this a World Cup ::

 
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MessagePosté le: Lun 11 Juin - 07:26 (2018)    Sujet du message: Russia 2018 has all the ingredients to make this a World Cup Répondre en citant

Russia 2018 has all the ingredients to make this a World Cup to savour
 
sbobet online 24 ANOTHER World Cup without Scotland, the fifth in succession, is a depressing prospect. The days when the national team’s involvement in the tournament every four years was keenly anticipated, expected even, are long gone now. Generations of football supporters in this country have grown up without knowing the pride and joy in watching their best players grace such a rarefied stage. The 2-2 draw with Slovenia in Ljubljana back in October was gut-wrenching enough at the time. A last-gasp fightback in the final Group F game proved in vain and the triumph that Gordon Strachan’s side needed to secure a play-off spot eluded them. But now the tournament is set to start for real, their absence is especially hard to bear.

However, all is not lost. There will still, as always, be much for football fans in this country to savour at Russia 2018 in the coming weeks even though they are once again not represented by their national team. From the moment that Russia kick off the opening match against Saudi Arabia in the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow on Thursday until the final is staged at the same 81,000-capacity venue a month and a day later, the finals promise to be fascinating, captivating, exhilarating and entertaining viewing.

sbobet online 24 Craig Gordon, Leigh Griffiths, Andy Robertson, Kieran Tierney and Scotland will not be present– maybe next time! – but a stellar cast and the outstanding teams on the planet most certainly will be.The World Cup has unquestionably diminished somewhat in these less innocent, more commercial, high-tech times. Having competitive football screened 12 months a year on satellite television and highlights available at the touch of a button online has lessened its impact considerably. The demands that have been made on the leading players by their club sides during the course of lengthy and draining campaigns, too, are all too obvious.

The chance of trouble flaring is also, alas, a high one despite repeated guarantees that adequate safety measures are in place to prevent it. Russian supporters have a notorious and well-deserved reputation and were involved in ugly clashes with England fans, who aren’t exactly virtuous themselves, at Euro 2016.The authorities have assured organisers there will be no violence. But the host nation’s ultras are among the most organised and ruthless anywhere. Racism frequently rears its ugly head, homophobia too. Gay fans have been warned not to display their sexuality.

This will be the first World Cup where the video assistant referee (VAR) will be in use and it is to be hoped that will prevent any injustices occurring. But it is a new and far from perfect system and has not been met with universal approval in the countries where it has been trialled to date. It could very easily, if the examples of other sports are anything to go by, do as much damage as it does good.

sbobet online 24 Russia 2018, though, still has, on the park at least, the capacity to be a classic tournament which will live long in the memory.Can Brazil, the most successful team in the history of the event with five victories and a country synonymous with all that is good about the beautiful game, erase the painful memory of that incomprehensible 7-1 defeat they suffered at the hands of eventual winners Germany in the semi-final in Belo Horizonte in their homeland back in 2014? They are joint favourites along with the defending champions and will be hell bent on restoring their damaged pride.

 


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