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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Over one million people attend World Cup fan festival in Russia

MOSCOW Russia (Xinhua) -- Over one million people have attended the 2018 FIFA World Cup fan festival in the 11 Russian host cities over the first four days of the tournament, FIFA said on Sunday.

"Just four days into the World Cup and we’ve already reached 1,000,000 spectators at the FIFA Fan Fest. What an amazing start!" FIFA said on its official Twitter account.

The FIFA Fan Fest venues have been organized in all of the 11 host cities, where fans can gather and watch live broadcasts of the games on large screens free of charge.

According to Tass news agency, the Fan Fest venue in Moscow has been operating in front of the main building of the Moscow State University since June 10 and will offer broadcasts of 56 games throughout the entire run of the tournament.

The World Cup kicked off here on Thursday and will continue through July 15, with a total of 64 matches to be played by 32 national football teams at 12 stadiums in the host cities.
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EARLIER REPORT:

Brazil superstar Neymar: "I’m not scared to dream big"

MOSCOW Russia (Xinhua) -- Brazil superstar Neymar says he is "not scared to dream big" as the Selecao look to secure a sixth World Cup triumph in Russia.

Just hours before Brazil’s first match against Switzerland on Sunday, the Paris Saint-Germain forward posted a video on social media showing his efforts to overcome injuries along with a short message.

"I don’t know how it will end, but you can be sure that we are going to try to make a country happy.

"It’s our dream and I’m not scared to dream big," the 26-year-old said.

Neymar made reference to the fractured vertebra he suffered in Brazil’s victory over Colombia in the quarterfinals of the 2014 World Cup.

The injury ruled him out of Brazil’s semifinal against Germany, which the tournament hosts lost 7-1.

"The big moment has come. After four years I am taking part in another World Cup," said Neymar, who became the world’s most expensive footballer last August when he joined PSG from Barcelona in a deal worth 222 million euros.

"What an honor to play for my country and pursue a big dream.

"I’ve had a lot of difficulties and I feel blessed to have made it this far.

"I’m completely happy to be accompanied by not only great professionals, but great players."

In a news conference on the eve of Sunday’s match, Brazil coach Tite said Neymar is still not 100% fit as he recovers from surgery to repair a broken bone in his right foot.

             

 

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