Former FIFA President Joseph Blatter arrives at a hotel in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 19, 2018. (AP Photo/Dmitry Serebryakov)

Banned ex-FIFA president Blatter in Russia for World Cup

June 19, 2018 - 1:23 pm

MOSCOW (AP) — Suspended former FIFA president Sepp Blatter has arrived in Moscow for a World Cup visit at the invitation of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Blatter posed for photographs with people on his arrival Tuesday at a five-star downtown hotel. The 82-year-old Blatter is banned from official football duty until October 2021 for financial misconduct during this 17-year rule.

But the FIFA ban does not prevent him attending games and he is expected to see Portugal play Morocco on Wednesday at Luzhniki Stadium.

This is Blatter's first public appearance outside his native Switzerland since July 2015 when the World Cup qualifying draw was conducted in St. Petersburg.

Blatter shared the stage that day with Putin and could meet with the Russian president this week.

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