Russia was awarded the right to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Thursday in a vote by the FIFA executive committee. It beat competition from England and joint bids from Spain-Portugal and Belgium-Netherlands.

Russia called on FIFA to help shape the country’s future, with bid officials saying the organization could help Russia achieve its modernizing mission more quickly.

The bid was without Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who decided to stay at home despite long being heralded as “team captain” of the campaign.

Qatar to host FIFA's flagship tournament in 2022

Qatar has been selected as host of the World Cup in 2022.

The country was awarded the tournament on Thursday in a vote by the FIFA executive committee. It beat competition from the United States, Australia, South Korea and Japan.

Qatar presented the most technically ambitious plans for a World Cup, using its 30-minute presentation to underline how the tournament could unify a region ravaged by conflict.

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