The attention of world football is shifting to Russia after a celebration marked the 12-month countdown to the next FIFA World Cup.
Brazilian football legend Edson Arantes do Nascimento, known as Pelé, attended the FIFA World Cup 2018 1 Year To Go event, which was held at Red Square in Moscow on Friday.
“This is a great opportunity to be here because my luck started in 1958, during which I played against Russia. Brazil won the World Cup 1958. That was a fantastic start for me,” said Pelé.
Pelé was 17 years old when he clinched a World Cup title. He is considered an unrivalled World Cup champion as he is the only triple winner of the tournament in history.
The 21st FIFA World Cup is scheduled to take place in 2018 from June 14 to July 15. Russia is also the host of the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, which will kick off on Saturday at 6 p.m., local time.
Swiss watchmaker Hublot will act as the official timekeeper for both the FIFA World Cup and the FIFA Confederations Cup.
Hublot also served as official timekeeper for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa and the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
“Hublot and football have a long story. For 10 years now Hublot has partnered with this incredible sport,” said Hublot CEO Ricardo Guadalupe.
One Year To Go: Brazilian football legend Edson Arantes do Nascimento, known as Pelé (second left), Hublot CEO Ricardo Guadalupe (second right), FIFA Chief Commercial Officer Philippe Le Floc’h (right) and Russian retired footballer Alexey Smertin (left) celebrate in Moscow on Friday. (JP/Elly Burhaini Faizal)