An organization observing discrimination in European football said it did not register a single major incident involving far-right hooligans or any racist incidents involving Russian fans at the World Cup.
Piara Powar, the director of FARE […] reports: "There was nothing great and nothing about Russians," Powar said. "Of course that was one of the challenges that came into the tournament, which we think is good news."
Russia pledged to host a safe and secure World Cup in eleven cities that would be inclusive and diverse. But racial incidents involving matches between Russian Premier League clubs and an international friendly earlier this year raised fears that players and fans might be maltreated.
CSKA Moscow fans shouted racist insults at Arsenal's black players in Moscow several times during a Europa League match in April, while FIFA fined a month before the World Cup for racist violence against French players in a friendly in March has imposed.
Powar says that the absence of racist incidents at the tournament was not a big surprise. The efforts of Russia and its citizens to give foreign guests a positive image of the country.
"We know that during World Cup time, the population knows they are in public Otlight," he said. "The world is watching."
Alexei Smertin, the anti-discrimination inspector of the Russian Football Union, said Russia received positive feedback from visiting teams, fans and officials.
"Before the World Cup there were a lot of fears from foreign media, and we are glad that after the arrival here all the negative stereotypes were destroyed, everyone the diversity of Russia and Russia our hospitality, "he said.
The absence of major racist incidents, however, does not mean that the group stage of the World Cup ran without discrimination problems.
FIFA imposed a fine on Mexico for homophobic singing by its fans, Denmark was punished for a sexist banner and some women were discriminated against behavior Poland and Serbia were also punished for "political and offensive" banners shown by their fans.