Blatter packs a bag for Russia 2018 World Cup appearance

Putin reviews 2018 stadia with Blatter

October 23 – Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter has been invited to next year’s World Cup by Russian president Vladimir Putin and says he will accept even though he is still banned for six years after being found guilty of authorising a “disloyal payment” of $2 million to then UEFA president Michel Platini.

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Messi saves Argentina; Chile miss the cut; Portugal in but Dutch ditched

Messi hat-trick

By Andrew Warshaw

October 11 – Cometh the hour, cometh Lionel Messi. Just when the odds were stacked in favour of Argentina failing to qualify for the World Cup finals for the first time since 1970, the mercurial maestro struck a superb hat-trick away to Ecuador to haul his country back from the brink of elimination.
The 2014 runners up began the day sixth in their group and needing a top-four place to qualify automatically.

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