Despite not playing, United States leads World Cup flight booking growth to Russian Federation

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The award-winning singer formerly in the band Take That, who is best known for his hit single "Angels", will sing alongside Russian soprano Aida Garifullina shortly before Russia and Saudi Arabia kick off the World Cup at Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium. It's the opener of the tournament, which means it'll probably be the most watched game involving these two teams in Group A. The host nation and Saudi Arabia will battle for three vital points, with the group's second match between Uruguay and Egypt arriving on Friday.

The 2018 World Cup is set to begin this week, with 32 nations meeting in Russian Federation to play for the biggest prize in worldwide soccer. India also withdrew from the World Cup before the start of the tournament.

Coca-Cola has said that it will show its support for the Saudi Arabian team with branding and signage on and off the field and will back the squad as they aim to qualify for all upcoming global and regional tournaments.

The new FIFA World Ranking formula will be more objective and fair than the current one, CEO of the Local Organizing Committee Alexey Sorokin said on Sunday.

"It is time for us in Brazil to win a World Cup again", the Nike ambassador told reporters in Moscow.

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FIFA World Cup 2018 is all set to kick off when Russian Federation take on Saudi Arabia in the tournament opener on Thursday.

"The live studio show Football Extraaa and the breakfast show Kick-Off will enrich the die-hard football enthusiast's viewing experience of 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia", Rajesh Kaul, President, Sports and Distribution Business, Sony Pictures Networks India said.

The singer will be joined by Russian soprano Aida Garifullina, and - presumably not on vocals - former Brazilian global Ronaldo, part of the winning teams in 1994 and 2002.

ITV have broadcast rights to the first match of the tournament and the show beforehand. "We have to see when India plays at FIFA World Cup".