FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter, as part of his work visit to Russia, held meetings with President Vladimir Putin, Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko and the head of the organizing committee of the 2018 World Cup Alexei Sorokin to discuss questions related to the World Cup 2018 that will be held in Russia.
According to FIFA official website, Blatter discussed an opportunity to cut the number of host cities for the World Cup 2018 in Russia.
According to RBC, for the time being, it is officially planned that the world football championship will be held in 11 Russian cities. In Moscow, the tournament will be held in two arenas - Luzhniki and Spartak. The list includes St. Petersburg, Samara, Saransk, Rostov-on-Don, Sochi, Kazan, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Nizhny Novgorod and Yekaterinburg.
Earlier, Krasnodar and Yaroslavl were also listed as hosting cities, but were deprived of this opportunity about two years ago. In addition, Moscow's Dynamo stadium that remains under construction has left the list of venues as well. Now Kaliningrad, Volgograd and Yekaterinburg may lose the right to host the World Cup as well. Apparently, this opportunity is discussed in relation to the question of building stadiums in those cities.
Most likely, the number of cities will be reduced to nine.
Alexey Navalny returned to Russia on January 17. He was detained upon arrival at the Sheremetyevo Airport. A court arrested Navalny for 30 days