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2018 Fifa World Cup draw to be held in the Kremlin

Fifa has confirmed the draw for the 2018 World Cup is set to take place in the Kremlin on Friday, December 1.

The 2018 World Cup draw will take place in the Kremlin. Credit: PA

The date was already known but the choice of venue underlines the significance of the World Cup to the Russian government.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Kremlin is a fortified complex in the heart of Moscow that contains several cathedrals and palaces, one of which is the official residence of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The draw itself will be staged in the State Kremlin Palace, a building intended to house meetings of the Soviet Union's Communist Party but now used as a concert hall.

In a statement given to Press Association Sport, a Fifa spokesperson said: "Fifa and the local organising committee can confirm that the final draw for the 2018 Fifa World Cup will take place on December 1 in the concert hall of the State Kremlin Palace, in Moscow.

"This prestigious entertainment venue with a capacity of 6,000 spectators has hosted many international and locally renowned artists in the past, as well as traditional ballets and operas."

World Cup expansion positive for small nations - Regan

Stewart Regan is dealing with the news in a positive manner. Credit: PA

The Scottish Football Association have welcomed the news that the World Cup will be expanded to 48 teams for the 2026 tournament.

Scotland, currently ranked 67th in the world, will now have more chance of qualifying for the tournament thanks to the expansion.

The nation last qualified for the World Cup in 1998, and now hope progression to international football's pinnacle is now possible.

We are pleased with the news that the FIFA World Cup will expand to 48 teams from 2026.

We believe this is a positive step, particularly for the smaller nations, and will allow more fans across the globe to revel in their country’s participation at a FIFA World Cup Finals. This will also allow these nations to invest further in their footballing infrastructure and youth development, which in turn can yield significant social benefits.

The exploits of Wales, Iceland, and Northern Ireland at EURO 2016 showed what an impact the smaller teams can have, and how beneficial to a tournament their participation can be. A greater eclectic mix of footballing cultures at the FIFA World Cup will create a bigger and better atmosphere than ever before.

– Scottish FA chief executive Stewart Regan


Fifa looking at measures to improve player behaviour

Marco van Basten says FIFA is considering introducing further measures to improve player behaviour towards officials.

Van Basten believes the behaviour of players towards referees should be better. Credit: PA

The world governing body's chief officer for technical development has admitted football could learn from rugby, which allows only captains to speak to referees.

"There are a lot of players now who are complaining during a game," former Holland striker and manager Van Basten said in an interview with the BBC.

"I am sure the behaviour of the players can be better - we are thinking about putting it back in the right direction."

When asked about comparisons with rugby, Van Basten replied: "I think we can learn from every sport and they can learn from us - but we have to confront the problem."

Television replays to assist referees were used for the first time in FIFA competition during this month's Club World Cup in Japan, while in English football referees were given the power to issue red cards to confrontational players.

"This is what we have to do to help the referees," Van Basten said about rule changes.

"We try to make a good product - dynamic, exciting, but in the end also honest. There's a lot of emotion in the game and that's what's good - but we have to control it also."

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