Russia's psychic cat Achilles picks home team for World Cup opener

Achilles the cat lies on a table after attempting to predict the result of the opening match of the FIFA World Cup 2018

Achilles the cat lies on a table after attempting to predict the result of the opening match of the FIFA World Cup 2018

Canada's venues will located be in Edmonton, Montreal and Toronto, while the Mexican potential host cities are Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey. Standing on front row from left: Steve Reed, president of the Canadian Soccer Association, Carlos Cordeiro, U.S. soccer president and Decio de Maria, President of the Football Association of Mexico.

Maybe, finally, some sports officials made decisions based on existing merits and what is best for the game, rather than following political agendas.

Óscar Tabarez has led the South Americans at the 1990, 2010 and 2014 tournaments, and when Uruguay's game kicks off in Yekaterinburg it'll be his fourth World Cup in charge - meaning he will have the Most FIFA World Cup appearances with the same national team by a coach.

Trump has previously warned that he will cut aid for countries that may vote against the joint North American bid.

Maradona, often considered one of the greatest football players in history, won the World Cup with Argentina in 1986 when the tournament was in Mexico.

UEFA will push strongly for the 2030 World Cup, keeping the modern rate of every third edition hosted in Europe.

The 2018 World Cup kicks off today between hosts Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia, a match sure to be forgotten.

Ghana curiously failed to cast their vote while South Africa's neighbours Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique and Zimbabwe joined Benin, Cape Verde, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone in favouring the North American bid over their continental allegiance.

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Not only did she remind delegates about Morocco's lack of infrastructure but highlighted the North American bid's ability to deliver double the revenue at $14 billion.

A total of seven Arab countries, mostly seen as allies of Morocco, voted for the US-Canada-Mexico bid.

Despite the nation not qualifying for the tournament, China's irrepressible thirst for football means it will spend five times more than America on World Cup advertising.

"It would be a shame if countries that we always support were to lobby against the USA bid", Trump wrote.

"No one has said to us they're not voting for us because of who we have in the White House".

With the tournament ballooning to 48 teams in 2026, hosting will be even more taxing.

Willa Frej contributed reporting.

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