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Russian ladies who won’t celebrate World Cup success


Russian football fans in Sochi on June 25, 2018, reacts as a chance goes begging while watching the Russia 2018 FIFA football World Cup group A match between Uruguay and Russia on a big screen in the fan zone. / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS

There seems to be a missing link between the host of last FIFA World Cup, Brazil, and Russia.

At the 2014 World Cup, all Brazilian were part of the celebration, whether or not a football match involving the national team was taking place in their city.

Brazil is famous for producing soccer stars like Pele, Garrincha, Kaka and Ronald and winning the World Cup an astounding five times, and the nation is regarded as Mecca of football.


The people were able to prove it by exhibiting their uniquely jubilant style of street celebration in 2014.

Whenever the Samba Boys were on the pitch playing, every Brazilian, male or would take to the streets beating drums, singing and dancing.

They will point to a particular direction as if they were heading to the venue where the match was taking place.

And for the period of the match, no Brazilian will engage in any form of business, no matter how important.

No taxi on the street, no food vendor, and no hotel services for visitors. You have to wait till the end of the match.

Those were some of the high points at Brazil 2014,and it was an incredible sight for visitors from different parts of the globe.

However, the situation looks different here in Russia 2018 World Cup.

On a day the Russian national team produced one of the biggest upsets in the tournament, beating former champion, Spain, to reach the quarterfinal, many visitors were expecting an all-night celebration on the streets, particularly in major cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg. It was not to be.

Rather, a majority of the people, male and female, young and old went about their businesses.


The spectacular performance of goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev (it sounds like an Urhobo or a Yoruba name), stunned many football fans across the globe.

It was a nerves taking moment at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow with about 144 million Russians and many more across the globe believing in Akinfeev to save the day after both teams had played 1-1 both at regulation and in extra time. He rose to the occasion.

After stopping one of the penalty kicks taken by Spain, Akinfeev magic prevented Spain once again in their fourth kick, as he dived one way and the ball went in another way.

But just as it seemed he might have be beaten, somehow he, like his team, found a way to win.

His left leg swung to kick Lago Aspas’s penalty. It took the host through to the quarterfinals of the World Cup in 48 years, winning 4-3 at the end of the day on penalty.

While Russian fans and supporters inside the stadium were celebrating the most improbable success, perhaps the most significant they have ever had, some felt the victory had no significant impact in their lives.

At the Otenb Hotel in the centre of St. Petersburg, virtually all the female workers did not see any reason why people must travel from different parts of the World because of football.

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