Russia 2018 World Cup Ruble Emblem Logo Circulated Football Coin Silver Eagle UK

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Seller: Top-Rated Seller notinashyway (16,667) 99.6%, Location: Look at my other Items, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 302757912010 World Cup RubleRussia 2018 This is a 2018 25 Ruble Coin from Russia which has actually been circulated in Russia It is Silver Coloured made of Cupro Nickle One side has the Official Russia 2018 World Cup Logo and the other side has the Russian Two Headed Eagle Emblem They were produced by The Central Bank of Russia There were less than 20,000 minted and now unavailble in Russia A Must-Have Football Souvenir Add the 25 rouble coin issued for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia to your coin collection today! The commemorative coin pays tribute to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia. It features the famous official emblem of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia with the caption 2018 FIFA WORLD CUP RUSSIA. The coin's reverse features the coat of arms of the Russian Federation. This must-have coin has been designed and crafted by the leading experts in their field. It's struck in copper nickel, and is the perfect keepsake for the biggest event in football's calendar. Mintage: 19,750,000 Year of Issue: 2018 Country of Issue: Russia Metal: Copper-Nickel Quality: Uncirculated Currency: Rouble Diameter: 27mm Weight: 10g A Beautiful coin and Magnificent Keepsake Souvenir to Commemorate Russias Biggest Ever Sporting Event! I have a lot more World Cup Items on Ebay >>> CLICK HERE TO VISIT MY SHOP Buy with Confidence please read my feedback from over 14,000 satisfied customer Read how quickly they receive their items - I post all my items within 24 hours of receiving payment International customers are welcome. I have shipped items to over 120 countries International orders may require longer handling time if held up at customs If there is a problem I always give a full refund Returns are acceptedIf your unhappy with your item please return it for a full refund I am a UK Seller with over 10 Years of eBay Selling Experience Why not treat yourself? 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Brisbane, Riverside, San Bernardino, Cincinnati and AccraThe last time the world gathered for the global football extravaganza, it was in the Amazon in 2014. The beautiful cities of Porto Alegre, Sao Paolo, Belo Horizonte and the jungle in Manaus all played a great part in the beautiful spectacle of football. The tournament in Brazil will be remembered for causing Kenyan’s sleepless nights as the games were played in ungodly hours. People were awake as late as 1am to catch the games. The hosts Brazil ended the tournament in fourth place but nothing can take away the pain of being whitewashed 7-1 by eventual tournament winners Germany. The Los Blancos of Argentina couldn’t find the spark required or even inspiration by their captain and talisman Lionel Messi as Andre Schuller set up Mario Goetze late in extra time scoring the goal that gave Germany the win. This was the Die Mannschaft’s 4th World title. Almost four years later, we have the privilege of sharing with you the stories of the beautiful game of football; this time emphasis on the Russia 2018 tournament that begins on June 14th 2018 at the Luzhniski Stadium in Moskva, Russia. The hosts will be joined by 31 other teams including the defending champions and several other debutants and nations making a comeback into the global showbiz. On this introduction edition, we will be glad to share with you each of these teams and from what Confederation they come from, together with the seeded pots for the draw to be held on 1st December 2017. We will then continue our analysis, coverage and give you all the necessary information even as we countdown to Russia 2018. Buckle up and sit tight as we take you through the 32 teams that have qualified for the World Cup. Our coverage per confederation starts with Asia Football Confederation. (AFC) AFC is allocated 4.5 slots (4 automatic and 1 inter-continental playoff with CONCACAF 4th placed team). The four teams that advanced directly were. Iran South Korea Japan Saudi Arabia. Australia (Had to beat Syria in a Home and away fourth round match before beating Honduras in the Inter-continental play off) It is also worth noting that the best placed finish by any Asian side was in 2002 Japan/Korea World Cup as co-hosts South Korea finished fourth. 2. Confederation of African Football (CAF) CAF is allocated 5 slots in the World Cup. The five teams that qualified for the World Cup are as follows. The Super Eagles of Nigeria. The Lions of Teranga from Senegal The Atlas Lions from Morocco The Pharaohs of Egypt. The Carthage Eagles of Tunisia. A fun fact is that The Atlas Lions of Morocco are returning to the World Cup under the Tutelage of Herve Renard who was previously the coach of Ivory Coast and Zambia (Won the African Cup of Nations with the respective nations). He secured Morocco’s passage into the World Cup at the expense of Ivory Coast following a 2-0 away win in Abidjan Senegal Coach Aliou Cisse was the Captain of the Teranga Lions when they played in their first world cup in 2002. It has been a while since the Pharaohs of Egypt appeared on the global show piece. This is also the first time that the continent is represented by three North African Sides in the tournament. 3. Confederation of North, Central and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) CONCACAF is a mouthful to be honest. What we know is that they have 3.5 slots played in a very confusing manner. We shouldn’t even go through that. The three teams that qualified are: Mexico Costa Rica Panama Not USA Something to note is that: Panama are making their debut in the World Cup. USA didn’t qualify Honduras lost their chance when they were defeated by Australia in the Inter Continental Play-Off 4. South America Football Federation (CONMEBOL) CONMEBOL is one of the trickiest qualifying regions in any qualifiers for the World Cup. The reason for this is the home and away ties that one has to play. Secondly, going to play in the high altitude of Bolivia has been something teams have to adapt to. Continental speaking, this region has three world cup winners who have won it more than once. 4.5 slots are allocated to the continent. The qualified teams are as follows: Brazil Argentina Uruguay Colombia Peru (who advanced after beating New Zealand in the Inter-Confederation Play-Offs) It is worth noting that Chile and Paraguay miss out on this edition of the World Cup, with Argentina surviving a scare before securing qualification on the last day of match day. 5. UEFA This has to be the region with the most number of slots in the Cup. We have never understood why this is the case. However it is also the most grueling as a big shot always ends up missing out on direct qualification. The region is allocated 13 Slots with Russia as the hosts making it 14 as the total number of teams from the confederation in the 21st Edition of the Fifa World Cup. The teams that have qualified are as follows. Russia (Hosts) France Portugal Germany Serbia Poland England Spain Belgium Iceland The teams from 2-10 all qualified as the group winners of the respective qualification groups. The following is the list of the teams that qualified from the play-offs. Switzerland Croatia Denmark Sweden The biggest casualties in this round were Italy, Netherlands and Wales. It would be weird not to see the likes of Gareth Bale, Arjen Robben, Gigi Buffon, Andrea Balzeretti, Aaron Ramsey in the World Cup. Did your team make it? How far do you project your favorite team will go? Talk to us on the comment section below. 100. Eric Dier - Tottenham One of the first names on the Tottenham teamsheet, Dier has also established himself as an England regular this year, and looks a certainty for Gareth Southgate's starting XI in next year's World Cup should he remain fit. 99. Thomas Delaney - FC Copenhagen/Werder Bremen Delaney secured a move to Werder Bremen in the summer after impressing for FC Copenhagen, while a hat-trick in Denmark's 4-1 win over Armenia in September - three days after scoring against Poland - helped the nation secure a World Cup play-off spot, where they knocked out the Republic of Ireland to reach next summer's tournament. 98. Aaron Ramsey - Arsenal Few players can lay claim to scoring a winning goal in the FA Cup final, never mind doing it twice. However, after doing so in the 2014 triumph over Hull City, Ramsey popped up once again to score the decisive goal against Chelsea in May. He also netted his 50th goal for the club in October's 2-1 win against Swansea. 97. Luka Modric - Real Madrid One of the more surprising rankings on the list, Modric came fifth in this year's Ballon d'Or vote after enjoying Champions League and La Liga glory with Real Madrid. His formidable understanding with Casemiro and Toni Kroos in midfield has allowed the forward line to flourish at Real. 96. David de Gea - Manchester United De Gea has 25 clean sheets for club and country this year, with the United shotstopper earning plenty of plaudits after their December win over Arsenal in the Premier League, which saw him make a joint-record 14 saves. He was also named in the PFA Team of the Year for a fourth time and came 20th on the Ballon d'Or list. Thierry Henry sits down with Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea to take an in-depth look at the Spaniard's traits 95. Suso - AC Milan Having departed Liverpool in January 2015, Suso has gone from strength to strength at AC Milan, playing a major role in the Serie A giants' rejuvenation. The 24-year-old's form has been so impressive that he has been linked with a big-money return to Liverpool, and earned his first international cap in November, which when you consider the options Spain coach Julen Lopetegui has at his disposal, cannot be downplayed. 94. Marco Verratti - PSG Verratti appeared set to move to Barcelona in the summer, but the influx of talent in the French capital persuaded the 25-year-old he is best to stay put. The Champions League has brought out the best of Verratti in an attacking sense this season, with two goals and two assists in the group stages. 93. Josip Ilicic - Atalanta Another late climber in the list due to recent form. Ilicic spent the last four years at Fiorentina, before joining Atalanta in the summer. Three World Cup qualification goals set him on his way to a fine start to life at Atalanta after making the switch in the close season. Four goals and four assists in Serie A this campaign has increased his stock yet further. 92. Mesut Ozil - Arsenal A section of Arsenal fans are still to warm to the Germany international, but once again, Ozil is among the frontrunners for chances created in the Premier League. Last season, only Kevin De Bruyne and Christian Eriksen created more chances, while, this time around, Ozil is right up there in terms of creativity once again. Watch a selection of the best Premier League saves from 2017 91. N'Golo Kante - Chelsea Kante became the first outfield player in Premier League history to win back-to-back titles with different clubs after following up Leicester's shock league triumph in 2016 with domestic glory at Chelsea this year. A terrific 2017 for the Blues saw Kante finish eighth in the Ballon d'Or rankings, while he also picked up the PFA Player of the Year award in May. 90. Marcos Alonso - Chelsea The Chelsea defender embraced the role of wing-back during the Premier League title-winning season as Antonio Conte utilised the Spaniard's energy and stamina to great effect. 89. Ivan Rakitic - Barcelona The midfielder helped steer Croatia to the World Cup with a 4-1 aggregate victory over Greece in the play-offs, while he scored in one of the year's most memorable games - the 3-2 league win over rivals Real Madrid. 88. Remo Freuler - Atalanta Everton fans will be happy to see the back Atalanta defensive midfielder Remo Freuler. With five goals and four assists last season in Serie A, Freuler has built on an impressive end to last season to continue to drive Atalanta forward, with Freuler the heartbeat of the side that convincingly beat Everton twice in this season's Europa League. 87. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic - Lazio A simple search of the midfielder's name will show you that Manchester United, Liverpool and Barcelona are said to be interested in the 22-year-old, who played an integral part in helping Lazio finish last season fifth in Serie A. He also put in a starring role in the Italian Super Cup clash against Juventus, which saw them shock the Italian champions 3-2 in August. 86. Fernandinho - Man City City's attack is rightly grabbing the headlines this campaign, but it's Fernandinho who has been doing the silent work in midfield. Only Nicolas Otamendi, Granit Xhaka and David Silva have averaged more passes than the Brazilian in the Premier League this season, while a pass completion percentage of 90.2 sees him comfortably in the top 10. 85. Malcom - Bordeaux The 20-year-old Brazilian winger arrived in France from Corinthians in January 2016. Quick and tricky, he's added 11 goals to his seven assists in 2017, lighting up Ligue 1 with form that has seen him linked with Bayern Munich and Manchester United. Watch a selection of the best Premier League saves from 2017 84. Leon Goretzka - Schalke Goretzka's stock continues to rise at Schalke, with the German midfielder said to be a target for Arsenal and Manchester United. The 22-year-old also scored his first goals for Germany this year, netting in the Confederations Cup wins over Australia and Mexico before also getting on the scoresheet against Norway and Azerbaijan in their World Cup Qualifiers. 83. Jose Callejon - Napoli The Spanish winger has enjoyed an impressive return of 15 goals for his club in 2017, with six of those coming this season as he's helped fire Napoli into the Serie A title race. Callejon has also earned a recall to the Spain national team, with his performances putting him contention for a place in the World Cup squad. 82. Andre Silva - Porto/AC Milan After finishing the 2016/17 season with 16 league goals for Porto, Silva moved to Milan in a year where the striker became a regular fixture for Portugal, scoring seven times for the Euro 2016 winners, including their second in the vital 2-0 win over Switzerland in October. 81. Marco Asensio - Real Madrid The heir to Cristiano Ronaldo's throne at Real Madrid? At just 21, Asensio is already setting the Bernabeu alight, while he was named in the European U21 Championship's team of the tournament after impressing for Spain. 80. Willian - Chelsea The Brazilian's versatility meant he was not always a starter in Chelsea's Premier League-winning season but he made a consistent impact off the bench when called upon by Antonio Conte. 79. Andrea Belotti - Torino Belotti has been heavily linked with a move away from Torino throughout 2017 and heading into the upcoming January window but, so far, he has stuck with the Serie A side. His stay has paid off for the Italian club too, with 21 goals in 37 appearances across all competitions this year. 78. Aritz Aduriz - Athletic Bilbao The Basque striker is getting better with age as he continues to spearhead an Athletic side who would struggle without his goals. Aduriz already has 11 to his name in 2017/18 even though he is not starting every game, as his 36-year-old body cannot take the rigours of two games a week. He is still a serious contender for the Spain squad in Russia next summer. 77. Thomas Lemar - Monaco One of the many stars of Monaco's Champions League semi-finalists. He scored twice and created four goals in nine European games, bringing his quality to attention thanks to his attacking prowess and link-up play in a formidable side. 76. Bernardo Silva - Monaco/Man City Silva was a vital cog in the Monaco machine that won their final 12 Ligue 1 games of the 2016/17 season to win the title. The club also reached the Champions League semi-final, but their stellar campaign ultimately saw the team ripped apart, and Silva was one of the first to depart, joining Manchester City in May for £43m. 75. Lars Stindl - Borussia Monchengladbach During the Confederations Cup the 29-year-old striker was pivotal in Germany lifting the trophy, scoring in three of the four games he appeared in, including the winner in the final against Chile. 74. Joshua Kimmich - Bayern Munich A Confederations Cup winner in the summer, the versatile Germany international has proven himself to be equally adept at right-back or midfield for both club and country. 73. Cesc Fabregas - Chelsea The Chelsea midfielder has enjoyed a new lease of life under Antonio Conte, with only Kevin De Bruyne creating more chances in the Premier League this season. It had appeared that the Spain international's days were numbered at Stamford Bridge with the arrival of Tiemoue Bakayoko providing more competition for places, but his form this season means he remains a key figure down the King's Road. 72. Ben Davies - Tottenham When Kyle Walker departed and Danny Rose was forced out with injury, it looked like Tottenham were about to lose a dynamic creative full-back duo, but Ben Davies, along with Kieran Trippier, have stepped up to the plate with impressive aplomb this season. No defender has created more chances for the team-mates than Davies this season, even though he has had to play in a back three on occasion this campaign. 71. Riyad Mahrez - Leicester A man reborn under Claude Puel? Mahrez is back to his best at Leicester, and five goals and four assists so far this campaign means he has already matched his combined total for the whole of last season. The 2015/16 PFA Player of the Year is clearly enjoying his football once more at the King Power. 70. Naby Keita - RB Leipzig The midfielder earned his move to Liverpool (to go through in 2018) thanks to a string of impressive performances which helped RB Leipzig to Champions League qualification. In the 2016/17 season he averaged 2.6 interceptions per game, more than even N'Golo Kante. 69. Arturo Vidal - Bayern Munich Failing to qualify for the World Cup and losing the Confederations Cup final was a cruel blow for Vidal but he shone personally, enjoying an average of 107 touches a game in the Bundesliga and helping Bayern to another league title. 68. Emre Can - Liverpool Jurgen Klopp has become reliant on the midfielder to bring calm to his team, an attribute which was key in helping the Reds to the Champions League, not to mention winning Goal of the Season with his overhead kick at Watford. 67. Kamil Glik - Monaco The Poland international has remained a rock at the back for Monaco during a transition period for the club, helping them stay in contention with the chasing pack behind PSG, while also helping his country to the 2018 World Cup as group winners. 66. Koke - Atletico Madrid Koke has been a regular fixture for Atletico for seven seasons now, and the 25-year-old continues to improve year on year. The midfielder came in the top 10 last season for both assists (joint-seventh with eight), key passes (ninth with two per game) and dribbles (fifth with two per game) in La Liga, outlining his importance to Diego Simeone's side going forward. 65. Wilfred Ndidi - Leicester Ndidi cannot shake off the comparisons to N'Golo Kante, given that he was tasked with filling the Frenchman's boots when the latter left for Chelsea in 2016. However, the midfielder is proving to be a rock in midfield for the Foxes - an average of 4.3 tackles per game this season is comfortably the highest rate in the Premier League. 64. Timo Werner - RB Leipzig Werner's 21 league goals in 2016/17 played a huge role in RB Leipzig's second-place finish in the Bundesliga table. He has continued that fine scoring form into this season, netting eight times in the league and a further three in the Champions League. He has 30 goals this calendar year for club and country, having made his debut for Germany at the Confederations Cup. 63. Emil Forsberg - RB Leipzig The Swedish midfielder was the fulcrum for club and country as he led RB Leipzig to the Champions League and Sweden to a World Cup place thanks to their play-off victory over Italy. 62. Fabinho - Monaco Fabinho was part of the breakout Monaco squad that reached the Champions League semi-finals last season, and was one of the few to stay over the summer as the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Benjamin Mendy headed for pastures new. That breakup of the team has meant that Fabinho has not quite reached the heights of the second half of last season, but has still been a key component of their side. 61. Corentin Tolisso - Lyon/Bayern Munich The Frenchman showed his capabilities for Lyon, which resulted in an international debut under Didier Deschamps and in the summer he had the pick of top European clubs, eventually plumping for Bayern Munich where he has thrived early on. 60. Pedro - Chelsea An unsung hero of Chelsea's title success last season, Pedro's work-rate and versatility was a real asset to the team, while his defensive capabilities cannot be overlooked. Only four forwards won more tackles in the Premier League than Pedro last season. 59. Joshua King - Bournemouth With Harry Kane, Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku leading the way in the 2016/17 Premier League goalscoring charts, it perhaps went under the radar that King netted 16 times as Bournemouth secured a ninth-placed finish - the highest position in the club's history in what was only their second season in the top tier. 58. Olivier Giroud - Arsenal Arsene Wenger is starting to see his compatriot as an impact player off the bench but he is still thriving in the role, even if he would like more time on the pitch, scoring 16 goals for Arsenal in 2017. 57. Raul Garcia - Athletic Bilbao Garcia's 14 goals and nine assists in the 2016/17 season outlined his importance to Bilbao, and the Spaniard already has seven goals to his name this campaign, though the club are currently languishing in the wrong half of the table as far as they are concerned. 56. Toni Kroos - Real Madrid Alongside Luka Modric, the German midfielder is at the centre of things for Real, as he helped them to domestic and continental glory, with his 12 assists in the league being crucial. 55. Filipe Luis - Atletico Madrid An underwhelming season at Chelsea is a long way behind Luis now, who has gone on to re-establish himself as one of the top left-backs in the world since his switch back to Atletico in 2015. The Spanish club may have suffered the disappointment of an early exit from the Champions League this season, but they have had a good season in La Liga so far, and are Barcelona's nearest challengers. 54. Alvaro Morata - Real Madrid/Chelsea After ending the 2016/17 season with 15 La Liga goals for Real Madrid, the striker was heavily linked with a move to the Premier League. Manchester United appeared to be frontrunners for the Spaniard, but after signing Romelu Lukaku, it was Chelsea who bought the striker for £70m. And he is certainly proving his worth at Stamford Bridge, scoring nine league goals and assisting a further four in 16 games to date. 53. Henrikh Mkhitaryan - Manchester United The Armenia international settled into Jose Mourinho's side after a tough start at Old Trafford but five assists and a goal in 12 Premier League appearances in 2017/18 have not been sufficient to make Mkhitaryan a regular in the United team. 52. Dani Alves - Juventus/PSG Alves decided against joining Pep Guardiola's revolution in the summer after losing to Real Madrid in the Champions League final, but he has slotted in well in the French capital, quickly becoming integral as Paris Saint-Germain dominate Ligue 1 and make steady progress in Europe. 51. Gylfi Sigurdsson - Swansea/Everton Swansea might have gone down if it was not for the influential Iceland midfielder who scored nine times to help the Welsh side stay up. His form earned him a move to Everton where he has struggled to recapture what he offered at the Liberty Stadium. 50. Thiago - Bayern Munch The annual Bundesliga title was collected, with the Spaniard's contribution being six goals and five assists in the 26 games he featured in. Thiago has also become a regular for Spain thanks to his fine form and will be targeting a key role at the World Cup. 49. Marc-Andre ter Stegen - Barcelona It says everything about Ter Stegen's performances for Barcelona this year that he is the highest-ranked goalkeeper on the list. The German stopper has conceded just 28 goals all year and his speed off his line and agility are the base from which the team's attacking stars can do their thing. 48. Radja Nainggolan - Roma A dynamic midfielder, Radja Nainggolan has been linked with a move to Chelsea in recent months, but he remains committed to staying in Italy. His leadership, after the club lost several players in the summer, helped Roma finish above Chelsea and top of their Champions League group and they remain in touch in the Serie A title race. 47. Paul Pogba - Manchester United Without Pogba in the team, United are never the same. He helped the team to Europa League and FA Cup success in his first season back with the club and started 2017/18 by netting three and setting up five in his opening eight games of the Premier League. 46. Marek Hamsik - Napoli If this is the year that Juventus' stranglehold on Serie A is finally broken, then Marek Hamsik is one of the men who can play a key part in it. Napoli are one of the two clubs, along with Inter Milan, that are challenging fiercely for the title this season. His goal in the 3-1 victory over Torino on December 16 was his 115th for the club, matching Diego Maradona's record as the club's highest goalscorer. 45. Aleksandar Kolarov - Man City/Roma After spending seven seasons with Manchester City, Kolarov signed for Roma in July, where he has scored three goals and assisted a further five already this season. He also netted in two World Cup Qualifiers against Moldova and the Republic of Ireland in 2017 as Serbia sealed a place in Russia next year - where they will face Brazil, Costa Rica and Switzerland. 44. Iago Aspas - Celta Vigo Eleven goals and two assists already this season in La Liga shows Aspas could follow up an impressive season with an even greater one this time around. His 19 goals in 2016/17 came as Celta could only muster a 13th-placed finish in the league. 43. Nicolas Otamendi - Manchester City Few thought Otamendi would grow into the role of a consistent Premier League defender but he is arguably City's main man at the back now. He has smoothed his rough edges and has added goals to his game, scoring five in all competitions so far. 42. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang - Borussia Dortmund Dortmund may have finished third in the Bundesliga last season behind champions Bayern Munch and surprise-package RB Leipzig, but Aubameyang enjoyed another outstanding season in Germany, finishing as the league's top goalscorer on 31. He helped Dortmund get one over Bayern too - scoring in the DFB Pokal semi-final win - before netting the winning goal from the penalty spot to help them lift the cup at the expense of Eintracht Frankfurt. 41. Ciro Immobile - Lazio The Italian striker's name is a misnomer - Immobile is a rapid, versatile forward who has scored 16 goals in 16 Serie A appearances. His hat-trick in September helped Lazio to a 4-1 win over AC Milan and in October the 27-year-old signed a new deal with the club that will keep him in Rome until 2022. In a dark year for the Italian national team, he is one of the bright spots. 40. Luis Suarez - Barcelona Suarez has not hit the heights of old this year and his frustration at his indifferent form was evident when he ripped his shirt and stormed down the tunnel after missing a chance against Las Palmas in October. But 31 goals over the 12 months suggest the 30-year-old is far from finished at the top of the game. He scored his 100th goal for Barcelona in January. 39. Alexandre Lacazette - Arsenal Lacazette has taken his goalscoring exploits from Lyon to Arsenal, netting eight times in 19 games in the Premier League so far despite not always starting games under Arsene Wenger. The striker also netted twice for France in the friendly against Germany last month, just his second and third international goals, to boost his chances of leading the line at the World Cup next summer. 38. Roberto Firmino - Liverpool Now operating as a central striker for the majority of time he is on the pitch and has already surpassed his 2016/17 total of 13 goals as he becomes integral both in the Premier League and Europe. 37. Ivan Perisic - Inter Milan Having finished last season with 11 goals and 10 assists, Perisic snubbed a move to Manchester United in the summer and signed a new deal in September that will keep him at Inter until 2022. The Croatia winger is now focused on helping Inter secure a first league title for nine years and his hat-trick against Chievo early in December helped them to the top of Serie A. 36. Raheem Sterling - Manchester City The winger is enjoying a stellar season for Manchester City, who are breaking records as they look to clinch a third Premier League title. Sterling already has 12 league goals to his name this campaign, including late winners against both Huddersfield and Southampton. He has cut a rejuvenated figure since August, and England fans will hope that can continue ahead of the World Cup next summer. 35. Leroy Sane - Manchester City Sane has had a simply sensational 2017 and has really found his feet at Man City with the winger becoming an integral part of the side. He already has six goals and eight assists in 17 Premier League appearances this term and is starting to emerge as a real talent for Germany as the World Cup creeps ever closer, impressing when playing against England at Wembley in November. 34. Radamel Falcao - Monaco Falcao enjoyed a wonderful first half of 2018 as his goals helped Monaco to an unlikely run to the Champions League semi-finals and by May he had scored 30 goals in 43 appearances as his side claimed a memorable Ligue 1 title. Monaco's form has slipped this season after being picked off in the summer transfer market, but Falcao remains a constant threat in front of goal and his 24 goals saw him finish 24th in the Ballon d'Or voting. 33. Marcus Rashford - Manchester United Rashford came third in the Golden Boy 2017 award - behind Kylian Mbappe and Ousmane Dembele - after another impressive year for United. The forward was invariably pushed out to the wing with Zlatan Ibrahimovic and now Romelu Lukaku leading the line, but the England international has adapted to the role well, and looks certain to make Gareth Southgate's World Cup squad barring injury. 32. Memphis Depay - Lyon Not too many people would have seen Depay's turnaround in form coming when he left Manchester United at the start of 2017, but the Netherlands international has been resurgent since swapping Old Trafford for Ligue 1. He's scored 15 times in all competitions for Lyon and even re-established himself in the national setup, despite their failure to qualify for the World Cup. 31. Arjen Robben - Bayern Munich Although he may have announced his international retirement from the Netherlands this year, he continues to be a key figure for Bayern. He signed a one-year contract extension in January until the end of this season, with his future yet to be decided, although fans will be hoping for another year yet as his potential club retirement is also being touted. 30. Philippe Coutinho - Liverpool Coutinho's form at Anfield saw him become the No 1 target for Barcelona in the summer, but Liverpool stuck to their guns and insisted he wasn't for sale, and they've been rewarded with another fine campaign so far from the Brazil international. He has scored 11 goals and seven assists so far in just 17 appearances this season. 29. Alejandro Gomez - Atalanta Gomes, nicknamed Papu, makes the top 30 after a fine year with Atalanta. The 29-year-old attacking midfielder is integral to the Serie A outfit, having finished last season with 16 goals in 39 appearances. He marked his international debut for Argentina with a goal in the 6-0 win over Singapore in June. 28. Sergio Aguero - Manchester City A memorable 2017 for Aguero saw the striker surpass Eric Brook's 78-year record to become Manchester City's all-time top goalscorer. Goal No 178 came in November's 4-2 Champions League victory over Napoli, just five weeks after a car crash in Amsterdam, which fortunately saw him escape with just a broken rib. His City future was cast into doubt upon the arrival of Gabriel Jesus in January, but Pep Guardiola has ably rotated the duo, and Aguero currently has 12 league goals in what has been a record-breaking campaign so far at the Etihad. 27. Gonzalo Higuain - Juventus Higuain became only the second player (after Zlatan Ibrahimovic) to score over 100 goals in two of the top European leagues in the last 20 years when he reached three figures with a goal in the 2-0 win at Milan in October. The No 9 has proven to be a fine acquisition for Juventus, who made him the most expensive signing by an Italian club when he moved from Napoli for £90m in 2016. 26. Heung-Min Son - Tottenham Son has risen to the occasion in terms of helping Kane with the goalscoring load at Tottenham, with 22 goals to his name this calendar year. Son also helped South Korea book their spot in the 2018 World Cup, where they have been drawn against world champions Germany, Mexico and Sweden in Group F. 25. Florian Thauvin - Marseille Touted as a star of the future in 2014 and even a successor to Franck Ribery, the France winger looks to be finally fulfilling his potential on the south coast of France after an unsuccessful spell at Newcastle. The 24-year-old has 18 goals and 13 assists this year, making his France debut in the 5-0 win over Paraguay in June. 24. Mohamed Salah - Roma/Liverpool Salah has made his price tag of £36.9m look an absolute bargain after a magical start to life at Anfield following his summer switch from Roma. His goal against Arsenal was his 15th Premier League of the season, form he has replicated for Egypt - Salah was the top scorer for his country with five goals during the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification. Another one to get away from Chelsea. 23. Antoine Griezmann - Atletico Madrid Griemann committed to at least another season at Atletico Madrid in the summer thanks to their transfer ban, and it's been another impressive 12 months for the Frenchman. Although he has not quite reached the highs of a 2016 that saw him win the Golden Boot at the Euros and reach the final of that competition with France and the Champions League final with Real Madrid. 22. Casemiro - Real Madrid While other Real Madrid players have invariably put in headline-worthy performances, Casemiro has gone about his business in impressive style. The Brazil midfielder ranks second for the most tackles per game in La Liga this season (4.1 behind Leganes' Ruben Perez's 4.2) - a category he also came in second last year. A fine 2016-17 campaign for the midfielder was capped with a goal in the 4-1 victory over Juventus in the Champions League final. 21. Nabil Fekir - Lyon Fekir is a technical player who can play as an attacking midfielder or a second striker and has been in fine form throughout 2017. He scored a hat-trick in the 7-1 Europa League home win over AZ Alkmaar in February and he is pivotal to Lyon being the best of the rest as PSG dominate the French top division. 20. Alexis Sanchez - Arsenal Doubts persist over where Alexis Sanchez will be playing football next season, but there are no such concerns over his quality as he continues to be instrumental in Arsenal's push to regain their place at Europe's top table. His 17 goals in 2017 means he remains crucial to the Gunners, but his inconsistent form is allied to his uncertain future, which will be thrown into sharp focus in the early part of 2018. 19. David Silva - Manchester City It's been a superb 2017 for David Silva, who continues to be the linchpin in an impressive City side with an endless supply of talent. A £43.5m signing in Bernardo Silva can barely get a look in at the moment as his namesake continues to pull the strings. He already has eight assists this season, one more than he managed in the 2016/17 campaign, and we are only halfway through. 18. Dele Alli - Tottenham Alli might be going through a difficult period that affects all young players, but his form in the second half of last season sees him included here. He began 2017 in style, his two headers helping Spurs to a 2-0 win over Chelsea on January 4. That marked six goals in three games for the 21-year-old and he would go on to score 23 goals in all competitions. This season has been a struggle, and yet he still has seven goals and seven assists. 17. Isco - Real Madrid Despite arriving at Real Madrid in 2013, it took several seasons for Isco to truly establish himself as a first-team player at the Bernabeu. In the past 12 months, however, he has become a vital component for Real and Spain, netting 19 times for club and country. His rise to prominence can be shown by the fact he started Real's Champions League final win in May, having been used as a substitute in 2014 and 2016. 16. Eden Hazard - Chelsea Hazard was back to his best last season, helping Antonio Conte's side to the league title with 17 goals in all competitions and he was named in the PFA Team of the year for the fourth time in five years. He then came off the bench to help the Blues beat Spurs in the FA Cup semi-final and although the 26-year-old missed the start of this season with an ankle injury picked up on international duty, he already has eight goals for his club. 15. Kylian Mbappe - Monaco/PSG What a year it has been for Mbappe. The breakout star of Monaco's side that reached the Champions League semi-final, the teenager then completed a record loan switch to PSG, and has only improved from there. The 18-year-old became the youngest player to reach 10 Champions League goals earlier this month, beating the previous record by nearly two years. 14. Paulo Dybala - Juventus The Argentina international was given the No 10 shirt at Juventus at the start of the season and the 24-year-old has enjoyed a stellar year. One of three finalists for best forward in last season's Champions League, he scored his first hat-trick in a 4-2 win over Genoa in August and will look forward to going up against Harry Kane in the Champions League in the new year. 13. Edinson Cavani - PSG No player missed more big chances in 2017 than Cavani, but the Uruguay forward has still scored 36 goals for his club in 2017. This season, he has formed a lethal partnership with new arrivals Neymar and Kylian Mbappe as PSG bid to sweep Europe before them. He scored in the first three games of their Champions League campaign as the French giants broke the record for most goals (24) scored in the group stage. 12. Lorenzo Insigne - Napoli Insigne's performances early in 2017 led some to compare him to Napoli legend Diego Maradona and while the 26-year-old is naturally reluctant to entertain such comparisons, he is a product of the club's academy and is the focal point of an attack that has propelled Maurizio Sarri's side into the European elite. 11. Edin Dzeko - Roma The former Manchester City forward has found a home in Rome, winning the Serie A Golden Boot last season with 29 league goals - 39 in all competitions. He then scored six in his first five games of this campaign and finished 28th in the Ballon d'Or list for the year. 10. Robert Lewandowski - Bayern Munich Having signed a new deal at the end of last year to keep him at Bayern until 2021, Lewandowski continues to lead the Bayern line expertly, reaching 100 goals for the club in 137 appearances in a 3-0 win over Frankfurt in March. A hat-trick in the 6-1 win over Armenia in October took him to 50 goals for Poland to make him his country's all-time top scorer and his 16 goals in World Cup qualification was a UEFA record. 9. Saul Niguez - Atletico Madrid Atletico demonstrated their faith in 23-year-old Saul by agreeing a whopping nine-year deal with the midfielder in July and with good reason. The Spain international was top scorer at the 2017 UEFA Euro U21 Championship, including a hat-trick in the 3-1 semi-final win over Italy. He has become a key part of Diego Simeone's plans in Madrid. 8. Kevin De Bruyne - Manchester City The Belgian attacking midfielder has been the standout performer in a team packed with stars this season - the lynchpin of City's irresistible attack that helped Pep Guardiola's side win 17 consecutive Premier League games. It seems inconceivable the 26-year-old was not rated at Chelsea, as his 17 assists for 2017 leaves him just three short of the record set by Mesut Ozil in 2015. 7. Romelu Lukaku - Everton/Man Utd Lukaku may be the subject of scrutiny at the end of the year after a rough spell for United, but the Belgium striker did enough in the first half of the year for Everton to merit his place near the top of this list. His goal in the 3-1 win over Burnley in April meant he became the first Everton player since Bob Latchford to score 25 goals in consecutive seasons in all competitions and he was subsequently named in the PFA Team of the Year while being shortlisted for both PFA Player and Young Player of the Year. 6. Dries Mertens - Napoli Mertens has been the standout performer in an exciting Napoli side that led the way in Serie A until early December. The 30-year-old scored a hat-trick in a 7-1 win at Bologna and in May finished the campaign by scoring his 50th goal for the club and 28th for the season, which saw him finish one behind Golden Boot winner Edin Dzeko. 5. Christian Eriksen - Tottenham Stop Christian Eriksen, stop Tottenham. That has become an oft-repeated mantra in latter weeks of 2017 and although Harry Kane might have something to say about that, it's clear the Danish midfielder is integral to Spurs' clockwork midfield. He is the one player in Pochettino's side to pick a pass, although the highlight of his 2017 was surely his hat-trick in Denmark's World Cup qualifying playoff win over the Republic of Ireland. 4. Cristiano Ronaldo - Real Madrid It has been another stellar year for Ronaldo, winning his third Champions League trophy and a second La Liga title with a glut of goals to boot. It was topped off with a record fifth Ballon d'Or win in December and he has already scored 16 goals in 22 Real Madrid appearances across all competitions this season. 3. Neymar - Barcelona/PSG The brilliant Brazilian has continued the form that persuaded PSG to pay Barcelona a world-record £198m for him in the summer, with his new side dominating Ligue 1 and looking irresistible in the Champions League. No one won more duels than the 25-year-old in 2017 and he has a clash with old foes Real Madrid to look forward to in February 2018. 2. Harry Kane - Tottenham Spurs' talisman has shot into the world-class category in 2017, finishing 10th in the Ballon d'Or prize. After winning his second successive Premier League Golden Boot in May, his two goals in the 5-1 win over Stoke in December saw him become the first Englishman since Jimmy Greaves in 1955 to score 50 or more goals in a calendar year. His tally for league goals for the calendar year stands at 36, level with the record set by Alan Shearer in 1995. 1. Lionel Messi - Barcelona This version of Barcelona may not be hitting the heights of previous incarnations, but Lionel Messi's genius continues to abide and it's no surprise to see him top of the list again. The Argentine has 40 goals and 12 assists in 2017 and although Barca played second fiddle to rivals Real Madrid in the first half of 2017, his form has helped the Catalans top their Champions League group and open up a healthy lead at the top of La Liga. Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin (/ˈpuːtɪn/; Russian: Влади́мир Влади́мирович Пу́тин; IPA: [vlɐˈdʲimʲɪr vlɐˈdʲimʲɪrəvʲɪtɕ ˈputʲɪn] (About this sound listen); born 7 October 1952) is the current President of Russia, holding the office since 7 May 2012.[2][3][4] He was Prime Minister from 1999 to 2000, President from 2000 to 2008, and again Prime Minister from 2008 to 2012.[5] During his second term as Prime Minister, he was the Chairman of the ruling United Russia Party.[2] Born in Leningrad, then part of the Soviet Union, Putin studied Law at the Saint Petersburg State University, graduating in 1975.[6] Putin was a KGB Foreign Intelligence Officer for 16 years, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before retiring in 1991 to enter politics in Saint Petersburg. He moved to Moscow in 1996 and joined President Boris Yeltsin's administration, rising quickly through the ranks and becoming Acting President on 31 December 1999, when Yeltsin resigned. Putin won the subsequent 2000 Presidential election by a 53% to 30% margin, thus avoiding a runoff with his Communist Party of the Russian Federation opponent, Gennady Zyuganov.[7] He was re-elected President in 2004 with 72% of the vote. During Putin's first presidency, the Russian economy grew for eight straight years, and GDP measured in purchasing power increased by 72%.[8][9] The growth was a result of the 2000s commodities boom, high oil prices, and prudent economic and fiscal policies.[10][11] Because of constitutionally mandated term limits, Putin was ineligible to run for a third consecutive presidential term in 2008. The 2008 Presidential election was won by Dmitry Medvedev, who appointed Putin Prime Minister, beginning what has been called a period of "tandemocracy".[12] In September 2011, after presidential terms were extended from four to six years,[13] Putin announced he would seek a third term as president. He won the March 2012 presidential election with 64% of the vote, a result which aligned with pre-election polling.[14] Falling oil prices coupled with international sanctions imposed at the beginning of 2014 after Russia's annexation of Crimea and military intervention in Eastern Ukraine led to GDP shrinking by 3.7% in 2015, though the Russian economy rebounded in 2016 with 0.3% GDP growth and is officially out of the recession.[15][16][17][18] Under Putin's leadership, Russia has scored poorly on both the Economist Intelligence Unit's Democracy Index and Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index. Putin has enjoyed high domestic approval ratings during his career, and received extensive international attention as one of the world's most powerful leaders. 2nd and 4th President of Russia Incumbent Assumed office 7 May 2012 Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov Dmitry Medvedev Preceded by Dmitry Medvedev In office 7 May 2000 – 7 May 2008 Acting: 31 December 1999 – 7 May 2000 Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov Mikhail Fradkov Viktor Zubkov Preceded by Boris Yeltsin Succeeded by Dmitry Medvedev 34th and 38th Prime Minister of Russia In office 8 May 2008 – 7 May 2012 President Dmitry Medvedev First Deputy Sergei Ivanov Viktor Zubkov Igor Shuvalov Preceded by Viktor Zubkov Succeeded by Dmitry Medvedev In office 16 August 1999 – 7 May 2000 Acting: 9 August 1999 – 16 August 1999 President Boris Yeltsin First Deputy Nikolai Aksyonenko Viktor Khristenko Mikhail Kasyanov Preceded by Sergei Stepashin Succeeded by Mikhail Kasyanov Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Union State In office 27 May 2008 – 18 July 2012 Preceded by Viktor Zubkov Succeeded by Dmitry Medvedev Leader of United Russia In office 7 May 2008 – 26 May 2012 Preceded by Boris Gryzlov Succeeded by Dmitry Medvedev Secretary of the Security Council In office 9 March 1999 – 9 August 1999 President Boris Yeltsin Preceded by Nikolay Bordyuzha Succeeded by Sergei Ivanov Director of the Federal Security Service In office 25 July 1998 – 29 March 1999 President Boris Yeltsin Preceded by Nikolay Kovalyov Succeeded by Nikolai Patrushev Personal details Born Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin 7 October 1952 (age 64) Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union Nationality Russian Political party Communist Party of the Soviet Union (1975–91) Our Home-Russia (1995–99) Unity (1999–2001) Independent (1991–95; 2001–08) United Russia (2008–2012[1]) Other political affiliations People's Front (2011–present) Spouse(s) Lyudmila Putina (m. 1983; div. 2014) Children 2 including Katerina Tikhonova Residence Novo-Ogaryovo, Moscow, Russia Alma mater Saint Petersburg State University Awards =Order of Honor of the Russian Federation Order of Honour Signature Website Official website Military service Allegiance Soviet Union Service/branch KGB Years of service 1975–1991 Rank CCCP air-force Rank podpolkovnik infobox.svg Lieutenant colonel Vladimir Putin born 7 October 1952 2nd and 4th President of Russia (2000–2008 and 2012–present day) • 34th and 38th Prime Minister of Russia (1999–2000 and 2008–2012) Political activities 2000 presidential election 2004 presidential election 2012 presidential election First Cabinet Second Cabinet United Russia People's Front for Russia Vladimir Putin Presidency First inauguration Second inauguration Third inauguration K-141 Kursk Mikhail Khodorkovsky Yukos Alexander Litvinenko Political groups Russian taxes reforms Russian administrative reform 2006 Russian municipal reform Russian educational reform National Priority Projects National champions Russian housing reform 2002 Russian pension reform Monetization of benefits in Russia Putin's Plan Russian compatriots return program Stabilization Fund of the Russian Federation Speeches Munich speech Crimean speech Valdai speech Critics Putin must go Putinism Putin. Corruption Sovereign democracy Putin's Palace Putin. War Foreign policy Presidential trips Increasing role in the European energy sector Nord Stream Russia–Ukraine gas disputes Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty Russian military intervention in Ukraine Russian military intervention in Syria Russian involvement in the Syrian Civil War Internal policy Federal districts of Russia Legislative proposal acts 2008–2009 Russian financial crisis Russian financial crisis (2014–present) Family Vladimir S. Putin† (father) Maria Putina† (mother) Viktor Putin† (brother) Albert Putin† (brother) Lyudmila Putina (former wife) Yekaterina Putina (daughter) Maria Putina (daughter) Buffy (family dog) Koni (family dog) Public image Happy Birthday, Mr. Putin! Poyushchie vmeste Walking Together Nashi Putin's rynda Chapel of Russia's Resurrection Putin khuilo! Places named after Putin Vladimir Putin Peak Putin Prospect (Grozny) ← Boris Yeltsin Dmitry Medvedev → ← Dmitry Medvedev Category Category [hide] v t e Presidents of the Russian Federation Presidents Boris Yeltsin Vladimir Putin Dmitry Medvedev Vladimir Putin standard of the President of the Russian Federation Acting Presidents Alexander Rutskoy Viktor Chernomyrdin Vladimir Putin [hide] v t e Current leaders of the Group of 8 Canada Trudeau France Macron Germany Merkel Italy Gentiloni Japan Abe Russia Putin (suspended) United Kingdom May United States Trump European Union Tusk / Juncker [hide] v t e Current leaders of the Group of 20 Argentina Macri Australia Turnbull Brazil Temer Canada Trudeau China Xi European Union Tusk / Juncker France Macron Germany Merkel India Modi Indonesia Jokowi Italy Gentiloni Japan Abe Mexico Peña Nieto Russia Putin Saudi Arabia Salman South Africa Zuma South Korea Moon Turkey Erdoğan United Kingdom May United States Trump [hide] v t e BRICS Membership Brazil Brazil Russia Russia India India China China South Africa South Africa Summits Yekaterinburg 2009 Brasília 2010 Sanya 2011 New Delhi 2012 Durban 2013 Fortaleza 2014 Ufa 2015 Goa 2016 Xiamen 2017 Bilateral relations Brazil–China Brazil–India Brazil–Russia Brazil–South Africa China–India China–Russia China–South Africa India–Russia India–South Africa Russia–South Africa Leaders Temer Putin Modi Xi Zuma Related New Development Bank BRICS Contingent Reserve Arrangement BRICS Leaders BRICS Cable BRICS Universities League BRICS U-17 Football Cup 2016 Goa [hide] v t e Current leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Australia Turnbull Brunei Bolkiah Canada Trudeau Chile Bachelet China Xi Hong Kong Lam Indonesia Jokowi Japan Abe South Korea Moon Malaysia Najib Mexico Peña Nieto New Zealand English Papua New Guinea O'Neill Peru Kuczynski Philippines Duterte Russia Putin Singapore Lee Taiwan Tsai Thailand Chan-o-cha United States Trump Vietnam Quang [hide] v t e Current leaders of the Commonwealth of Independent States Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev Armenia Serzh Sargsyan Belarus Alexander Lukashenko Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev Moldova Igor Dodon Russia Vladimir Putin Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev [hide] v t e Candidates in the Russian presidential election, 2000 Winner Vladimir Putin (Independent) Other candidates Gennady Zyuganov (Communist Party) Grigory Yavlinsky (Yabloko) Aman Tuleyev (Independent) Vladimir Zhirinovsky (LDPR) Konstantin Titov (Independent) Ella Pamfilova (For Civic Dignity) Stanislav Govorukhin (Independent) Yury Skuratov (Independent) Alexey Podberezkin (Spiritual Heritage) Umar Dzhabrailov (Independent) Withdrew Yevgeny Savostyanov (Independent) [hide] v t e Candidates in the Russian presidential election, 2004 Winner Vladimir Putin (Independent) Other candidates Nikolay Kharitonov (Communist Party) Sergey Glazyev (Independent) Irina Khakamada (Independent) Oleg Malyshkin (LDPR) Sergey Mironov (Russian Party of Life) [hide] v t e Candidates in the Russian presidential election, 2012 Winner Vladimir Putin (United Russia) Other candidates Gennady Zyuganov (Communist Party) Mikhail Prokhorov (Independent) Vladimir Zhirinovsky (LDPR) Sergey Mironov (A Just Russia) Russia (/ˈrʌʃə/ (About this sound listen); Russian: Росси́я, tr. Rossija; IPA: [rɐˈsʲijə]; from the Greek: Ρωσία — Rus'), also officially known as the Russian Federation[12] (Russian: Российская Федерация, tr. Rossiyskaya Federatsiya; IPA: [rɐˈsʲijskəjə fʲɪdʲɪˈratsɨjə]), is a country in Eurasia.[13] At 17,075,200 square kilometres (6,592,800 sq mi), Russia is the largest country in the world by surface area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area,[14][15][16] and the ninth most populous, with over 144 million people at the end of March 2016.[17][7] The European western part of the country is much more populated and urbanised than the eastern; about 77% of the population live in European Russia. Russia's capital Moscow is one of the largest cities in the world; other major urban centers include Saint Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg, Nizhny Novgorod, and Kazan. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland (both with Kaliningrad Oblast), Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia, and North Korea. It shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U.S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. The East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD.[18] Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, the medieval state of Rus arose in the 9th century. In 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire,[19] beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium.[19] Rus' ultimately disintegrated into a number of smaller states; most of the Rus' lands were overrun by the Mongol invasion and became tributaries of the nomadic Golden Horde in the 13th century.[20] The Grand Duchy of Moscow gradually reunified the surrounding Russian principalities, achieved independence from the Golden Horde, and came to dominate the cultural and political legacy of Kievan Rus'. By the 18th century, the nation had greatly expanded through conquest, annexation, and exploration to become the Russian Empire, which was the third largest empire in history, stretching from Poland on the west to Alaska on the east.[21][22] Following the Russian Revolution, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic became the largest and leading constituent of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the world's first constitutionally socialist state.[23] The Soviet Union played a decisive role in the Allied victory in World War II,[24][25] and emerged as a recognized superpower and rival to the United States during the Cold War. The Soviet era saw some of the most significant technological achievements of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite and the launching of the first humans in space. By the end of 1990, the Soviet Union had the world's second largest economy, largest standing military in the world and the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.[26][27][28] Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, fifteen independent republics emerged from the USSR: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan; the Russian SFSR reconstituted itself as the Russian Federation and is recognized as the continuing legal personality and sole successor state of the Soviet Union.[29] It is governed as a federal semi-presidential republic. The Russian economy ranks as the twelfth largest by nominal GDP and sixth largest by purchasing power parity in 2015.[30] Russia's extensive mineral and energy resources are the largest such reserves in the world,[31] making it one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas globally.[32][33] The country is one of the five recognized nuclear weapons states and possesses the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.[34] Russia is a great power as well as a regional power and has been characterised as a potential superpower. It is permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, as well as a member of the G20, the Council of Europe, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and the World Trade Organization (WTO), as well as being the leading member of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and one of the five members of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), along with Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Crimea (/kraɪˈmiːə/; Crimean Tatar: Къырым, Qırım; Ukrainian: Крим, Krym; Russian: Крым, Krym, Greek: Κριμαία) is a major peninsula on the northern coast of the Black Sea in Eastern Europe that is almost completely surrounded by both the Black Sea and the smaller Sea of Azov to the northeast. It is located south of the Ukrainian region of Kherson and west of the Russian region of Kuban. It is connected to Kherson Oblast by the Isthmus of Perekop and is separated from Kuban by the Strait of Kerch. The Arabat Spit is located to the northeast, a narrow strip of land that separates a system of lagoons named Sivash from the Sea of Azov. Crimea (or the Tauric Peninsula, as it was called from antiquity until the early modern period) has historically been at the boundary between the classical world and the Pontic–Caspian steppe. Its southern fringe was colonised by the ancient Greeks, the Persians, the Romans, the Byzantine Empire, the Crimean Goths, the Genoese and the Ottoman Empire, while at the same time its interior was occupied by a changing cast of invading steppe nomads and empires, such as the Cimmerians, Scythians, Sarmatians, Goths, Alans, Bulgars, Huns, Khazars, Kipchaks, Mongols and the Golden Horde. Crimea and adjacent territories were united in the Crimean Khanate during the 15th to 18th century. In 1783, Crimea became a part of Russian Empire as the result of Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774). Following the Russian Revolution of 1917, Crimea became an autonomous republic within the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic in the USSR, though later, during World War II, it was downgraded to the Crimean Oblast. In 1954, the Crimean Oblast was transferred to Ukraine by Nikita Khrushchev/[3] in exchange for Ukraine giving up claims to other Ukrainian territories: Krasnador Krai and Kuban. Following collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine was formed as an independent country in 1991. Most of the peninsula was reorganized as the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, while the city of Sevastopol retained its special status within Ukraine. In 1997 Ukraine and Russia signed the Partition Treaty on the Status and Conditions of the Black Sea Fleet that partitioned the former Soviet Black Sea Fleet, setting terms that allowed Russia to continue basing its fleet in Crimea. Sevastopol remained the location of the Ukrainian Naval Forces, while Russian's Black Sea Fleet headquarters was also headquartered in the city. Ukraine extended Russia's lease of the naval facilities under the 2010 Kharkiv Pact in exchange for discounted natural gas. Following the 2014 Ukrainian revolution and overthrow of Viktor Yanukovych, unmarked Russian regular military forces together with local separatists took control of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol. The Russian-controlled authorities held a referendum on Crimea joining Russia, after which the territory was formally annexed by the Russian Federation as two federal subjects, Republic of Crimea and federal city Sevastopol respectively. The Constitutional Court of Ukraine deemed the referendum unconstitutional[4][5] and Ukraine continues to assert its rights over the peninsula[5] with most UN member countries continuing to regard Crimea as Ukrainian territory. Crimea articles Political status Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine) Republic of Crimea (Russia) History Bosporan Kingdom Roman Crimea Kipchaks Khazars Crimean campaigns of 1687 and 1689 Crimean Khanate 1783 annexation by Russia Crimean Goths Crimean War Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic Crimea in World War II Crimean Oblast 1944 deportations 1954 transfer to Ukraine President of Crimea (historical) 2014 Crimean status referendum 2014 annexation by Russia Supreme Council of Crimea (until 2014) (Chairman) Prime Minister of Crimea (until 2014) Council of Ministers (until 2014) Satellite image of Crimea Geography Arabat Spit Arabat Bay Azov Sea Crimean Mountains Kerch Strait Perekop isthmus Syvash Vyalova cave system Subdivisions Cities Raions Urban-type settlements Politics Constitution of the Republic of Crimea Head of the Republic of Crimea State Council of Crimea Crimean Federal District Sevastopol and the Black Sea Fleet Mejlis (Tatar assembly) Economy Tourism Kerch Strait Bridge Crimea Air (historical) Crimean Trolleybus Society Sports Crimean Premier League Demographics Peoples Russians Ukrainians Crimean Tatars Armenians Karaites Krymchaks Crimea Germans Languages Crimean Tatar Krymchak Religion Christianity Roman Catholic Diocese of Odessa-Simferopol Ukrainian Catholic Archiepiscopal Exarchate of Odessa Judaism Islam History Timeline Proto-Indo-Europeans Scythians East Slavs Rus' Khaganate Kievan Rus' Novgorod Republic Vladimir-Suzdal Grand Duchy of Moscow Tsardom of Russia Russian Empire Russian Republic Russian SFSR Soviet Union Russian Federation By topic Economy Military Journalism Postal Coat of Arms of the Russian Federation.svg Geography Subdivisions Borders Earthquakes Geology European Russia Caucasus Mountains North Caucasus Caspian Sea Ural Mountains West Siberian Plain Siberia Russian Far East North Asia Extreme points Cities and towns Islands Lakes Rivers Volcanoes Climate Politics Conscription Constitution Elections Federal budget 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arts and crafts Matryoshka Samovar Handicrafts Gorodets painting Gzhel Filimonovo toy Kholmogory bone carving Khokhloma Russian lacquer art Fedoskino miniature Kholuy miniature Mstyora miniature Palekh miniature Russian icons Zhostovo painting Ushanka Balalaika Tableware Table-glass Podstakannik Russian porcelain Dulyovo porcelain Samovar Clothing Afghanka Budenovka Cherkeska French Gymnastyorka Kokoshnik Kosovorotka Kaftan Lapti Orenburg shawl Papakha Peaked cap Podvorotnichok Sailor cap Sarafan Spetsodezhda Telnyashka Ushanka Valenki Musical instruments Balalaika Garmon Bayan Russian guitar Musical spoons Treshchotka Toys Bird of Happiness Cheburashka Filimonovo toy Dymkovo toys Kargopol toys Matryoshka doll Petrushka Other Izba Fabergé egg Shashka Tula gingerbread [hide] v t e Russia Subdivisions of Russia Federal subjects Republics Adygea Altai Bashkortostan Buryatia Chechnya Chuvashia Crimea1 Dagestan Ingushetia Kabardino-Balkaria Kalmykia Karachay-Cherkessia Karelia Khakassia 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Economic Development) Military districts (by Ministry of Defence) Federal districts (by President) Judicial districts (by law "On arbitration courts") [hide] v t e World Heritage Sites in Russia by federal district Kizhi Pogost Palace Square, Saint Petersburg Moscow Kremlin Central Church of the Ascension in Kolomenskoye Moscow Kremlin and Red Square Novodevichy Convent Trinity Sergius Lavra White Monuments of Vladimir and Suzdal Historic Centre of Yaroslavl Klyuchevskaya Sopka Volcano Lake Baikal Katun River in Altai Mountains Southern Western Caucasus Northwestern Curonian Spit1 Ferapontov Monastery Kizhi Pogost Virgin Komi Forests Historic Monuments of Novgorod and Surroundings Historic Centre of Saint Petersburg and Surroundings Solovetsky Islands Struve Geodetic Arc2 Far Eastern Lena Pillars Volcanoes of Kamchatka Central Sikhote-Alin Wrangel Island Siberian Golden Mountains of Altai Lake Baikal Landscapes of Dauria3 Putorana Plateau Uvs Nuur Basin3 Volga Bolghar Kazan Kremlin 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Sportspeople Chess players Ukraine (/juːˈkreɪn/ (About this sound listen); Ukrainian: Україна, tr. Ukraina [ukrɐˈjinɐ]), sometimes called the Ukraine,[8] is a sovereign state in Eastern Europe,[9] bordered by Russia to the east, northeast, and south, Belarus to the northwest, Poland and Slovakia to the west, Hungary, Romania, and Moldova to the southwest, and the Black Sea and Sea of Azov to the south and southeast, respectively. Ukraine is currently in territorial dispute with Russia over the Crimean Peninsula which Russia annexed in 2014[10] but which Ukraine and most of the international community recognise as Ukrainian. Including Crimea, Ukraine has an area of 603,628 km2 (233,062 sq mi),[11] making it the largest country entirely within Europe and the 46th largest country in the world. It has a population of about 42.5 million, making it the 32nd most populous country in the world. The territory of modern Ukraine has been inhabited since 32,000 BC. During the Middle Ages, the area was a key centre of East Slavic culture, with the powerful state of Kievan Rus' forming the basis of Ukrainian identity. Following its fragmentation in the 13th century, the territory was contested, ruled and divided by a variety of powers, including Lithuania, Poland, the Ottoman Empire, Austria-Hungary, and Russia. A Cossack republic emerged and prospered during the 17th and 18th centuries, but its territory was eventually split between Poland and the Russian Empire, and later merged fully into Russia. During the 20th century three periods of independence occurred. The first of these periods occurred briefly during and immediately after the German occupation near the end of World War I and the second occurred, also briefly, and also during German occupation, during World War II. However, both of these first two earlier periods would eventually see Ukraine's territories consolidated back into a Soviet republic within the USSR. The third period of independence began in 1991, when Ukraine gained its independence from the Soviet Union in the aftermath of its dissolution at the end of the Cold War. Ukraine has maintained its independence as a sovereign state ever since. Before its independence, Ukraine was typically referred to in English as "The Ukraine", but sources since then have moved to drop "the" from the name of Ukraine in all uses.[12] Following its independence, Ukraine declared itself a neutral state.[13] Nonetheless it formed a limited military partnership with the Russian Federation and other CIS countries and a partnership with NATO in 1994. In the 2000s, the government began leaning towards NATO, and a deeper cooperation with the alliance was set by the NATO-Ukraine Action Plan signed in 2002. It was later agreed that the question of joining NATO should be answered by a national referendum at some point in the future.[14] Former President Viktor Yanukovych considered the current level of co-operation between Ukraine and NATO sufficient,[15] and was against Ukraine joining NATO.[16] In 2013, protests against the government of President Yanukovych broke out in downtown Kiev after the government had decided to suspend the Ukraine-European Union Association Agreement and seek closer economic ties with Russia. After this began a several-months-long wave of demonstrations and protests known as the Euromaidan, which later escalated into the 2014 Ukrainian revolution that led to the overthrow of President Yanukovych and his cabinet and the establishment of a new government. These events formed the background for the annexation of Crimea by Russia in March 2014, and the War in Donbass in April 2014. On 1 January 2016, Ukraine applied the economic part of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area with the European Union.[17] Ukraine has long been a global breadbasket because of its extensive, fertile farmlands and is one of the world's largest grain exporters.[18][19] The diversified economy of Ukraine includes a large heavy industry sector, particularly in aerospace and industrial equipment. Ukraine is a unitary republic under a semi-presidential system with separate powers: legislative, executive and judicial branches. Its capital and largest city is Kiev. Taking into account reserves and paramilitary personnel,[20] Ukraine maintains the second-largest military in Europe after that of Russia. The country is home to 42.5 million people (excluding Crimea),[3] 77.8 percent of whom are Ukrainians "by ethnicity", followed by a sizeable minority of Russians (17.3 percent) as well as Romanians/Moldovans, Belarusians, Crimean Tatars, Bulgarians and Hungarians. Ukrainian is the official language and its alphabet is Cyrillic. The dominant religion in the country is Eastern Orthodoxy, which has strongly influenced Ukrainian architecture, literature and music. History Chronology East Slavs Kuyaba Kievan Rus' Mongol invasion Galicia–Volhynia Grand Duchy of Lithuania Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth Zaporozhian Cossacks Russian Empire Galicia After the Russian Revolution Ukrainian People's Republic West Ukrainian People's Republic Ukrainian SSR Chernobyl disaster Independence Orange Revolution Ukrainian crisis 2013–14 Euromaidan 2014 Ukrainian revolution Russian military intervention Annexation of Crimea by Russia 2014 pro-Russian unrest War in Donbass By topic Christianity Economic Military Geography National parks Biosphere Reserves Seven Natural Wonders of Ukraine Rivers Mountains Waterfalls Islands and sandbars Politics Constitution Flag Government President Foreign relations Military Political parties Elections Judicial system Law Law enforcement Economy Hryvnia (currency) National Bank Banking Banks Stock exchanges UX PFTS index Energy Telecommunications Internet Tourism Transport Ukrainian Railways Automobile roads Society Languages Religion Education Health Crime Human rights LGBT history Admin. divisions Oblasts regions by area by population by income Cities Raions Urban-type settlements Culture Vyshyvanka Pysanka Literature Taras Shevchenko Dance Architecture Seven Wonders of Ukraine Cinema Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors Gogolfest festival Cuisine wine Borshch Holidays Media television Music Sport Demographics Ukrainian people Rus' people Ruthenians diaspora Censuses 2001 2020 Outline Category Portal [hide] v t e Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Russia Eurasian Economic Union Union State Membership Members Armenia Azerbaijan Belarus Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Moldova Russia Tajikistan Uzbekistan Associate members Turkmenistan Ukraine Former members Georgia (1993–2009) History Russian Empire Soviet Union Dissolution of the Soviet Union Union of Sovereign States Belavezha Accords (Near abroad) Alma-Ata Protocol CIS flag Sports Unified Team at the Olympics Unified Team at the Paralympics CIS national bandy team CIS national football team CIS national ice hockey team CIS national rugby team CIS Cup (football) Military Collective Security Treaty Organization Collective Rapid Reaction Force Joint CIS Air Defense System Economics Economic Court CISFTA Eurasian Economic Community Eurasian Patent Convention Eurasian Patent Organization EU Technical Aid Organization Interstate Aviation Committee Condition: "In Very Good Condition", Country/Region of Manufacture: Russian Federation, Year of Issue: 2018, Country: Russia, Collections/ Bulk Lots: Putin

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