Mini-football Mini-football tournament "Football Maslenitsa" was held in Samara, on the occasion of one of the most popular national holidays in Russia. This year's competition was also dedicated to the preparation for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Eight teams participated in the tournament, representing local fans, employees of football club Krylia Sovetov Samara, the city administration, the regional duma and the city duma, sports journalists and employees of public utilities. The matches were played at Metallurg Stadium.
The winners and runners-up were awarded with medals, diplomas and 2018 World Cup souvenirs. Deputy Minister of Sport of the Samara region Lydia Rogozhinskaya participated in the ceremony. She noted the importance of such tournaments for football fans and sports development in the region.
“It's nice to see that the football festival has gathered so many people,” she told welcome2018.com. “Samara is a football city; this sport is an integral part of the lives of tens of thousands of residents of the region. People are not just into football, but are actively involved in it. Such events raise interest in football and a healthy lifestyle. This is especially important in light of the upcoming 2018 World Cup, when our region welcomes the world’s top teams,” she added.
Of course, the festival could not do without bliny - thin pancakes, traditional Maslenitsa food, which was offered to fans at snack bars.
“Samara Municipal Systems” team won the tournament. "This is my first time participation in this tournament and, of course, I’m glad I scored the winning goal, but the most important thing – the whole team won,” Ivan Soroka from the winning team said. “The road to the final match was not easy, all rivals were strong and worthy at least get out of the group, but we had a little more luck. We were happy to get presents that will remind us that very soon Samara will host the matches of the World Cup. I hope that I get to see the matches, I especially wait for our national team!” he said.