Friday 13 July 2018, 09:17

RELIVE: Russia 2018 closing press conference

With just two days left at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™, FIFA President Gianni Infantino spoke to the press to wrap-up of the tournament at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium, where the Final will be hosted on Sunday 15 July.

The FIFA President gave his reflections on the tournament, giving thanks to all those involved, while declaring Russia 2018 “the best World Cup ever”.

Following his opening remarks, he also went on to discuss the following:

  • ​VAR

  • The reasons behind expanding to a 48-team World Cup in 2026

  • The incredible atmosphere among fans at the tournament

  • On-going discussions around planning for Qatar 2022

You can relive the press conference in the video above and read a few of his comments below.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino gives a thumbs up at a press conference during the 2018 FIFA World Cup

Gianni Infantino

“We said we wanted this to be the best World Cup ever and it’s been the best World Cup ever. And we should say thanks to Russia: the Russian Government, the LOC, the Russian Football Union. And the volunteers, who are the smile and the heart of the World Cup. All of them have worked very hard to make this event a big success.

“This World Cup has changed Russia that has become a real football country. Football is now part of Russia’s DNA. It has also changed the perception of the world about Russia. Around a million people have come to Russia and everyone has discovered a wonderful and welcoming country.

“The 32 teams that made it here, that made us dream; a big thanks to them. It was them, the players, who talked on the field. Now we have a very special final between France and Croatia, two teams that played an important semi-final back in 1998. Special congratulations to them.”