THE World Cup final between France and Croatia was suspended after protesters stormed onto the pitch. Pussy Riot have claimed responsibility for the World Cup invasion, but who are they and what were they protesting about? Here's the lowdown. Who are Pussy Riot? Pussy Riot is a Russian political punk group who has a rotating cast of musicians and artists. Staunch activists, members Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova served 21-month jail terms following an anti-Putin performance at the alter of Moscow's largest cathedral in 2012. Alyokhina was also detained in August 2017 in the Siberian city of Yakutsk after protesting with another Pussy Riot member against the imprisonment of Ukranian film-maker Oleg Sentsov. The band staged another demonstration against Sentsov’s imprisonment by storming Trump Tower in New York in October 2018. They have also slammed the US president in their songs Make America Great Again and Police State. Did they invade the pitch at the World … [Read more...] about Who are Pussy Riot, did they claim the World Cup 2018 final pitch invasion and what were they protesting?
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Holding onto the trophy Germany are the reigning world champions, having beaten Argentina in the 2014 final after humiliating hosts Brazil 7-1 in the previous round. Many of Germany’s stars from that tournament are still around, including key midfielder Toni Kroos and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. Germany has also had the same coach since 2006, the cool-headed Joachim (Jogi) Löw. However, that feat won’t be easy to repeat as champions. No country has done so since Brazil followed up victory in 1958 by lifting the trophy in 1962, and talented rivals like France, Spain, and Lionel Messi’s Argentina will be desperate to come out on top. Will Germany have enough to go all the way again? The team's indifferent form in pre-tournament friendlies has dampened expectations. In recent days Germany has lost 2-1 to neighbours Austria and struggled to a 2-1 victory over lowly Saudi Arabia. They are a heavy favourite to make it out of a group including South Korea, Mexico, and … [Read more...] about World Cup 2018: A casual fan’s guide to the German team
In hosting the World Cup, Putin is hoping to replicate the success of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia. Here, the Russian president plays soccer with Infantino. ALEXEI DRUZHININ/TASS/GETTY World Vladimir Putin kept a watchful eye on a black-and-white soccer ball as it soared toward him through a spacious Kremlin office, before he deftly bumped it back with his head. On the other side of the room, Gianni Infantino, the president of FIFA, soccer’s international governing body, waited for the return pass. When it came, he flicked the ball up, juggling it from foot to foot before kicking it back to the Russian president. The two men, both dressed in suits and ties, were taking part in a promotional video for this summer’s World Cup, which Russia will host for the first time.In May, just weeks after the filming of the video, Putin and Infantino met again, this time in Sochi, on Russia’s Black Sea coastline, where they inspected the Fisht Olympic Stadium. The … [Read more...] about World Cup 2018: Will ISIS and Other Enemies Spoil Games for Putin’s Russia?
A LEADING terror expert has revealed how the World Cup is likely to be a target for ISIS nuts fired by religious zeal over the holy month of Ramadan. Rita Katz – head of the respected Site Intelligence – has uncovered a string of increasingly blood-thirsty threats to the showpiece tournament that begins in less than a month. The most recent came this week on ISIS-supporting internet channels with grisly propaganda snaps of stars Messi and Ronaldo being beheaded on the pitch. Another showed a suicide bomber outside Moscow’s Luzhniki stadium - home of the final - and warned: “We are in Russia. The security analyst wrote on Twitter: “Hard to ignore the recurring threats against #FIFAWorldCup2018 that have come from #ISIS channels online in recent months: images depicting killed players, advice for attacks, etc. SITE has reported on six this past week along. “To put things into perspective, a major event like #FIFAWorldCup2018 is a natural target … [Read more...] about World Cup 2018 in Russia faces major ISIS attacks as expert warns terrorists are looking to ramp up bombings during Ramadan
ENGLAND stars are beefing up security for their mansions over fears they could be raided during the World Cup, it is claimed. Gareth Southgate's players are believed to be organising round the clock patrols for their expensive homes as they prepare for the tournament in Russia this summer. A football insider said: “All the players are concerned about security but they have met with their individual clubs and their own security advisers to make sure that all their alarm systems are up-to-date and serviced and they will make sure their contracted security teams mount extra patrols around their properties during the time they are away. “The last thing they want to be concerned about is the security of their homes and loved ones when they out in Russia to do a job.” The revelation comes after it emerged that England's WAGs will be provided with their own security detail by the Football Association at this summer's World … [Read more...] about World Cup 2018 burglary fears lead to England footballers having ’24 hour guards at mansions’