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"The 2018 FIFA World Cup opening ceremony was a newsworthy event produced by a third party and carried live on FOX", they said.

Williams, who has previously performed at private parties organized by wealthy Russian business people, said he loved coming to Russia.

Edson Arantes do Nascimento, the football legend - who won the Jules Rimet Cup, used as the World Cup trophy from 1930-1970, three times - is one of the main guests invited at the opening ceremony in Luzhniki Stadium.

Videos and pictures started to circulate on social media of Williams with his middle finger up at the camera shortly afterwards.

He was singing and dancing in front of the crowd of 80,000 at Luzhniki Stadium (and millions watching him live on television worldwide) when Williams suddenly stared directly into one of the ground cameras and flipped his finger!

It will not be completely wrong if someone says World Cup is the biggest sporting event of all.

British pop legend Robbie Williams has caused controversy after giving the middle finger to a camera while performing at the World Cup opening ceremony in Russian Federation, an event viewed by perhaps as many as one billion people round the world.

Stephen Doughty, a Labour MP on the Home Affairs Committee looking into the suspicious deaths of Russians on British soil, said on Monday that it was "surprising and disappointing" that Williams had "agreed to be paid by Russia and Fifa".

After weeks anxiously waiting for the tournament to kick-off in Russian Federation, football fans have got their wish, with Robbie Williams and Vladimir Putin leading the way at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

Robbie Williams is a 44-year old an award-winning British pop icon.

Robbie Williams performed hits "Let Me Entertain You" and "Rock DJ" accompanied by dancers and freestylers.

Russia's game with Saudi Arabia will be the first in Group A. The second, which sees Mo Salah's Egypt take on Uruguay takes place at 1pm on Friday.

# Williams and Garifullina performed a duet of Williams hit single "Angels".