Between Beyoncé & Pussy Riot, The World Cup Was So Hot This Year

Etsuo Hara/Getty Images
For once all eyes were on Russia for a reason that didn’t involve President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Instead soccer fans around the globe anxiously watched to see who would win the World Cup between France and Croatia, held in Russia. And for the second time in history France snagged the title, beating Croatia 4-2.
The victory was celebrated by many, including Beyoncé, who, ahead of her second On the Run II tour performance in Paris, posted multiple photos of happy fans in the stadium to her Instagram. But beyond just getting Beyoncé’s seal of approval, the game was also a big deal because of the political awareness it raised about political and social issues like immigration, illegal arrests, and more.
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During the second half of the game, four people ran onto the field and were soon dragged off by officials. Later the runners, three women and one man dressed in old fashioned police uniforms, were identified as members of Pussy Riot. Following the protest, the punk rock band took to social media to share a list of demands to the Russian government, including to free political prisoners, to not “fabricate criminal accusations,” and to end “illegal arrests at protests.”
Fans also took to Twitter to celebrate the amazing diversity of this year’s winning team. “This French team is one of the most diverse. Sixteen of the 23 players on the team come from families that recently immigrated to France from places like Zaire, Martinique, Cameroon, Morocco, Angola, Congo, and Algeria. It’s amazing how immigrants can change culture,” one user tweeted.
Another wrote: If France was as racist towards its immigrant football players as it towards most of its other population, they would never have won the World Cup. The majority of goals were scored by ‘immigrants’ (one of them a Muslim). Hopefully that will change the attitude of some of them.”
Safe to say that this year’s World Cup was a pretty big deal. Even Trump said it was “one of the best ever.” Guess he liked the protest, too.
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