Russian Federation hands over World Cup hosting duties to Qatar

Posted July 17, 2018

"Russia is handing over the relay baton for hosting the FIFA World Cup to Qatar", Putin said.

In remarks released Monday by the Kremlin, Putin said the attempted cyberattacks targeted "information infrastructure" linked to the World Cup, but did not elaborate. The 40-year-old leader joined Paul Pogba and Benjamin Mendy in the former's trademark goal celebration move - the dab.

Then, as Macron and Grabar-Kitarovic walked toward the tunnel to leave the field, his heels were nearly clipped by some exuberant France players who were sliding on their bellies and their behinds across the soaked grass toward a bank of photographers beside a group of state presidents.

Pussy Riot claimed responsibility for the four pitch invaders who disrupted the final just after Croatia's goalkeeper saved a Kylian Mbappe shot in the 51st minute.

President Vladimir Putin said Russian Federation could be "proud" of its hosting of the football World Cup, judging it a success "in every respect" after Sunday's (Jul 15) final.

Heartbroken but proud Croatian fans in Zagreb cheered and wept as their "heroes" went down 4-2 to France in the World Cup final in Moscow on Sunday. "I am sure everyone liked the way they played, and so did I".

The game was watched by Putin, French President Emmanuel Macron and Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic.

Russian Federation went on to eliminate Spain in the round of 16 before losing to finalists Croatia on penalty kicks in the quarter-finals.

Some also saw a display of a great sporting spirit as she hugged players from both teams: "Loved your gesture and sporting spirit during World Cup final game". They last won in 1998 when they hosted the tournament.