|FIFA President Gianni Infantino (Photo: VNA)
Asian, African, and North American teams earned slots in the knock-out stage while knock-out stage’s regulars like Argentina, Spain, Germany, and Brazil had at least one defeat each.
Infantino said the matches, “played in beautiful stadiums”, had already attracted a television audience in excess of two billion viewers.
“Fantastic atmosphere, great goals, incredible excitement, surprises, small teams beating big teams. There are no more small teams and no more big teams,” the FIFA President said.
“The level is very, very equal. For the first time as well, national teams from all continents going to the knock-out phase, for the first time in history. This shows that football is really becoming truly global”, he said.