Witnessing the Final Draw of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ and being handed a ticket to a match in your home town by a genuine football legend – what could be a better gift for a life-long football fan?
Eleven lucky individuals enjoyed this once-in-a-lifetime experience, one from each Host City, who through their passionate and devoted love for football have earned themselves the title of ‘superfan’.
The youngest superfan is six-year-old Misha Smolin from Moscow. He has been a football supporter for as long as he can remember and simply cannot wait for the World Cup to get under way, so he can proudly wear one of the 300 football scarves in his family’s collection.
“What an amazing day!” Misha exclaimed to FIFA.com. “I love football so much and I cannot wait for the World Cup in Russia. I’m delighted I can cheer Russia on at the stadium. I hope that our team and players from countries like Argentina, France and Brazil will make us all happy with beautiful football next summer!”
The day before the draw they all met up with each other at the State Kremlin Palace and were introduced to the football stars who will be acting as draw assistants. During their meeting with Nikita Simonyan, Laurent Blanc, Gordon Banks, Fabio Cannavaro, Cafu, Carles Puyol and Diego Forlan, they were also handed symbolic tickets to the first Russia 2018 matches taking place in their cities.
- Eleven fans, one from each Russia 2018 Host City, have been invited to the Final Draw
- Football legends handed them World Cup tickets to a match in their city
- The supporters were picked out by a selection process in each Host City
The selection process for the superfans took on various formats and was presided over in each Host City by local World Cup Ambassadors and representatives from clubs, football federations and fan associations. The main criteria were their love for football, loyal support of a local team and desire to see the 2018 FIFA World Cup go ahead in their home city.
2018 FIFA World Cup Host City Superfans
- Volgograd – Olga Paramonova
- Ekaterinburg – Maria Panina
- Kazan – Sergei Serov
- Kaliningrad – Vladimir Zuev
- Moscow – Misha Smolin
- Nizhny Novgorod – Andrei Goryunov
- Rostov-on-Don – Sergei Kopin
- Samara – Elizaveta Levanova
- Saint Petersburg – Vladimir Vorobyov
- Saransk – Viktor Pautov
- Sochi – Igor Mamaladze