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World Cup fever

As the 32 teams from five confederations compete for the 2018 FIFA World Cup currently being held in Russia, sports aficiona­dos worldwide, with much excitement, patiently await the tournament’s result. It has been dubbed the most expensive World Cup ever in FIFA and football fans ex­pect no less than the most exhilarating football series this year.

This 2018 World Cup is the 11th tournament hosted by the continent of Europe since the first FIFA world football championships in 1930 staged in Uruguay. South America, North Amer­ica, Europe, Africa, and Asia have taken turns hosting past world cups, with Europe hosting the games the most times. Brazil holds the world record with the most FIFA world championship titles won. Brazilian footballers remain strong contenders for this year’s title along with players from Argentina, Germany, Spain, Portugal, France, Belgium, and Uru­guay.

From the 32 competing teams which were divided into eight groups, Uruguay currently leads the stand­ings. Not far behind are Rus­sia, France, Croatia, Mexico, England, and Belgium with six points. The tournament promises an exciting series with games scheduled until the 15th of July. The 2022 Qatar FIFA World Cup is simi­larly a sports event to look forward to as the tournament is the first World Cup to be held in an Arab country.

No matter what sports event it is, world tourna­ments not only provide spec­tators with entertainment. More importantly, competi­tions such as this 2018 FIFA World Cup bring out the best in participating coun­tries and provide them with opportunities to build and strengthen partnerships with other nations. Sports events are very potent tools for world peace and unification, bringing peoples and cul­tures together in the same playing field.

-Francis N. Tolentino