Seven exquisite hand-knotted Persian carpets commemorating the 2018 Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup in Russia have been put on display during a ceremony in the northwestern Iranian city of Tabriz.
Hossein Kazemi-Hamed, the weaver of the carpets, expressed his profound gratitude to Tabriz Mayor Iraj Shahin-Baher and veteran athletes of East Azarbaijan province as people gathered to get a glimpse of the works of art.
Kazemi-Hamed added that weaving the seven carpets took six and half a months to complete.
The Iranian artists noted that three of the carpets will be presented to the captains of Morocco, Portugal and Spain men’s national football teams in the group stage of the FIFA World Cup, while three others will be donated to the Russian Football Union, the FIFA World Football Museum and the Astan Quds Razavi Central Museum in the holy northeastern Iranian city of Mashhad.
The seventh carpet will be given to the Iran men’s national football team, domestically known as Team Melli, in case it manages to advance to the next level.
During the official 2018 FIFA World Cup draw ceremony at Kremlin State Palace in the Russian capital city of Moscow on December 1, Team Melli joined the Portugal national football team, nicknamed A Selecção, Spain’s La Furia Roja and Atlas Lions of Morocco in the preliminary round of the tournament.
The host nation, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Uruguay form Group A in the upcoming quadrennial international sports event.
France is drawn in Group C, and is pitted against Australia, Peru and Denmark.
Argentina, Iceland, Croatia and Nigeria are drawn in Group D.
Group E consists of Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia.
While the 2014 FIFA World Cup champion Germany, Mexico, Sweden and South Korea shape Group F, Belgium, Panama, Tunisia and England are in Group G.
Group H has Poland, Senegal, Colombia and Japan.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup will take place from June 14 to July 15. Russia will open the event against Saudi Arabia in a Group A fixture at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.
A total of 64 matches will be played in 12 venues located in 11 cities.
Iran will start its World Cup campaign against Morocco at Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg, Russia, on June 15.