World Cup player watch: England stars go bowling and first ball’s finally kicked
A daily look at what the tournament’s players have been getting up to in their time off the pitch.
It’s been a busy day for England, but it all started with something more important than football – as the Three Lions held a minute’s silence in training to mark the first anniversary of the Grenfell Tower disaster.
Later, Harry Kane wrote on Instagram: “It’s important to keep perspective in life. Remembering all the victims and their families one year on from the disaster.”
After training in Repino was finished, the players were able to let off some steam with a trip to the local bowling alley…
… followed by a spot of darts.
Away from England, many of the players have been busy posing for FIFA’s official profiles. Belgium, who only flew in on Wednesday, appeared to be among the last to be pictured.
Here are some of the earlier results…
Meanwhile, some sides were putting their final preparations together – such as Germany, who play on Sunday against Mexico, and Peru, who take on Denmark on Sunday.
For others, though, the sessions perhaps weren’t quite so tough.
Unsurprisingly, after all the hard yards, many of the players were clearly itching for the festival of football to begin – not least German pair Mesut Ozil and Mats Hummels.
It’s finally on #WorldCup— Mats Hummels (@matshummels) June 14, 2018
And with the first game finally under way, Poland’s Grzegorz Krychowiak perhaps best summed up how we were all feeling.