When at the end of 2010, FIFA has chosen Russia as the venue of the world Championship on football of 2018, most of the media, filled a hall in Zurich was disappointing. Perhaps it is incorrect in relation to the Russians, but I think that in addition to Russian journalists, almost no one has experienced the joy of this decision.
Now is the confederations Cup, anticipating the world championship. Not very correct to use the word “amazing,” but this event runs smoothly. Yet there was not a single case that the press had to wait for a bus that never came, as it was during the world Championships in South Africa and Brazil. The buses run on schedule.
Personal belongings are subjected to rigorous testing, but the police is not acting arbitrarily and not too formal. The guards say, “Thank you, opened your suitcase.” Checkpoint is far away from the stadium “Spartak”, where is the press center. The stadium offers a convenient service that brings journalists on cars for Golf.
It is clear that from this event depends on the credibility of Russia. Volunteers, mostly made up of students, well-prepared. They work with great enthusiasm. When I said I forgot my jacket in the St. Petersburg press bus, volunteers began calling and looking for him. In the end, the bus driver brought me my jacket in the hotel. I had no idea what they will be so helpful.
By the way, I remember how 11 years ago when I visited Moscow cold in order to write a piece about the football around the stadium, in front of which lay a mountain of snow, I was waiting for the representative of the football Federation, which was shaking from the cold. He had my card. He said he’s waiting for me, as the entrance is hard to find.
My peculiar ideas about the Russians are gradually changing. In a year Russia will be overrun by football fans from around the world. Perhaps this world Cup will be the event that will change the image of Russia.