About 800 people involved in Opening ceremony- director

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The opening ceremony will take place at 5:30 p.m. local time (10:30 a.m. ET), just 30 minutes before Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia spar off to officially commence this year's World Cup.

Williams said: "I'm so happy and excited to be going back to Russian Federation for such a unique performance".

"So we hope that they will show us that they can qualify for the second round". The opening game is between Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia and it follows the ceremony, beginning at 11 a.m. ET, according to FIFA.

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Although it would be the first tournament to be hosted by three nations, the vast majority of games will be held in the US. The tournament is expected to generate $5 billion in economic impact for the 16 host cities, according to Canada Soccer .

Unlike previous editions, this year's opening ceremony will take place just half hour before the curtain-raiser match, with a stronger focus on musical acts. One thing will remain the same, however: the underlying theme of celebrating not only football but also the host country, this time with a touching performance by one of Russia's most acclaimed young voices, Aida Garifullina. "The image that I will be presenting to the whole world will be very symbolic and associated with a dream coming to life". "Of course it is also an emotional one for the hosts".

"Football is truly loved here".

"We hope that football lovers coming to Russia from all over the world will appreciate it as well", said the General Manager of 2018 FIFA World Cup™ Project of the Coca-Cola System in Russia Mickael Vinet. The mega showpiece event kicks off tonight straight after the grand opening ceremony.

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Russian president Vladimir Putin then gave a speech at the Luzhniki Stadium.

English singer Robbie Williams began the World Cup by displaying an obscene gesture toward the camera during the opening ceremony. Through July 15, the tournament will provide a month of madness to soccer fans around the world and in the area.

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I think it's more special when you do it with people who support you and love you, care about what you do as a ball player. Plus, Golden State will get better. "Then it will ultimately come down to me, and so we'll see what happens".

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