By Our Reporter
France won the 21st edition of the World Cup by defeating Croatia by 4-2 in the final held in Moscow on Sunday. It was the second time France became the world champion in 20 years. France had won its first World Cup in 1998 by defeating Brazil in Paris.
Although Croatia dominated the final match, wrong refereeing and a suicide goal prevented tiny Croatia from becoming the World Cup champions.
Among the favourites only France survived till the final, other heavy weight teams failed to reach even the semi final. Germany, the defending champions, was eliminated in the first round while Argentina, Portugal and Spain failed to make their place in the quarter finals. Brazil, widely anticipated to be the winner, and Uruguay were defeated by Belgium and France respectively in the quarter finals.
Instead, England which was underestimated to be one of the weak teams this time reached semi final before Croatia sent them packing.
The results were really shocking with the elimination of the big teams in the early stages. Countries like Japan, Senegal and Iceland produced good results in some of their games whereas Germany and Argentina failed to play as expected.
However, Russian president Vladimir Putin became a real hero by successfully holding the 21st edition of the World Cup. He managed to hold the most successful World Cup of all the time. Except for a brief intrude during the final match, no major incidents off the field, no violence or hooliganism were reported. The fans and players returned home with positive impressions about Russia.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino also said this. He said this year’s World Cup had been the best ever and thanked Russia for the organisation. “It is an incredible, amazing World Cup. From the very beginning of the tournament, we have experienced incredible emotions from being here,” he said
Europe as well as USA had probably not thought that Russia could host the mega event so easily. But Russia did it and it was the diplomatic success of Putin.
Now the Russian president has every reason to be happy. Everyone from US President Donald Trump to French president Emmanuel Macron appreciated Russia for successfully hosting the World Cup.
French President Macron and Croatian President KolindaGrabar-Kitarović also joined Putin during the closing ceremony hogging and saluting the players.