Russia v Saudi Arabia: Group A - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia

World Cup Opening Ceremony: The Best Over-the-Top Moments

The 2018 World Cup kicked off in Moscow today, and before the opening match between host-nation Russia and Saudi Arabia the world was treated to an opening ceremony featuring musician Robbie Williams, Brazilian soccer legend Ronaldo, and lots of people juggling and/or dressed as soccer balls. Here, the best photos from the spectacle.

FINGERS RAISED Matthias Hangst/Getty Images FINGERS RAISED English singer Robbie Williams, who had been lambasted for agreeing to headline the event by critics of Russian President Vladimir Putin, kicked things off with a bang by raising his middle finger on live television. He performed his songs "Let Me Entertain You" and "Rock DJ," but not the controversial hit (in Russia, at least) "Party Like A Russian." Here, he performs a duet with Aida Garifullina of the Vienna State Opera. TAKING THE FIELD Clive Rose/Getty Images TAKING THE FIELD Artists perform during the opening ceremony THE TROPHY UNVEIL MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images THE TROPHY UNVEIL World-cup winning Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas was on hand along with Russian model Natalia Vodianova to bring out the World Cup trophy (in a Louis Vuitton travel case, no less).

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SOCCER SARTORIALIST Matthias Hangst/Getty Images SOCCER SARTORIALIST The costumes were very... on theme. THE ORIGINAL RONALDO Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images THE ORIGINAL RONALDO Brazilian soccer legend Ronaldo took to the pitch to square off with Zabivaka, the FIFA World Cup Russia mascot. WHY AM I HERE? Lars Baron - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images WHY AM I HERE? Someone with a good instinct for the camera -- or desperately looking for help. LADY IN RED PATRIK STOLLARZ/AFP/Getty Images LADY IN RED Former Miss Russia Victoria Lopyreva strolls the field. GETTING ARTISTIC Lars Baron - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images GETTING ARTISTIC While it's not exactly the Olympics, the World Cup opening ceremony had its share of pomp. BALLS ON BALLS KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images BALLS ON BALLS A performer juggles during the opening ceremony. SOCCER FOR ALL Lars Baron - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images SOCCER FOR ALL The performers at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow love soccer -- can't you tell? THE GANG'S ALL HERE ALEXANDER NEMENOV/AFP/Getty Images THE GANG'S ALL HERE Today's performers wave to the crowd. And let the games begin!



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