2018 FIFA World Cup
Japan vs Bahrain in 2008 World Cup © Neier
Russia has been awarded the 2018 Football World Cup, and will soon start developing the 16 ultra-modern football stadiums across 13 host cities that it promised in its ambitious winning bid. 'We go to new lands', Sepp Blatter, former FIFA president, said as he unveiled the winner. The event will force Russia to modernise much of its transport infrastructure and relax its strict visa requirements, both to the long-term benefit of tourists to the country. It will also need to address its local footballs fans' well-earned reputation for violence and xenophobia. The World Cup will be a challenge for Russia in many ways - as it is for many of it's host countries - but football fans the world over are excited to explore the mysterious country.
Date: 14 June to 15 July 2018