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The VIII-th Artists' World Championship Football. Moscow, May 25  - June 3, 2018

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Ilya Kononov: from a childhood dream to victory over the world art-football champion 30.05.2018 11:43

 
Belarusian TV presenter and showman Ilya Kononov takes part in the football and music festival “Art-footbal”l for the first time, playing at the position of the striker in the national team. Ilya's debut turns out to be very successful. In difficult games with Kazakhstan and Slovenia, the art-football player scored 3 goals and became the main scorer of the Belarusian national team.

In an interview with the “Art-football” correspondent, Ilya Kononov spoke about his childhood dream, his friendship with the best football player of Belarus Alexander Gleb, the upcoming match with the Russian national team and about what it is like to strike double to the world champions in football among artists.
 
 
— You said that the “Art-football” realized your childhood dream. Will you share it with us?
 
Of course! Like absolutely any boy, I played soccer in my childhood, but in this sport my career was formed. I was injured, because of which I left the big sport and now I work on Belarusian television, I conduct music programs and reality shows.
 
Since childhood I've always wanted to see our country at the World Cup and most of all represent it at this tournament. But the national team of Belarus has not yet taken part in the final part... However, thanks to the “Art-football” we all have the opportunity to represent our country in a great sport among the artists. This is the fulfillment of a dream.
 
 
— What emotions do you have from the tournament and from the festival?
 
“Art-football” is a great opportunity to meet colleagues from different countries, feel like a real football player, at least try to do it. The atmosphere here is amazing! I am participating for the first time, although our country has already come to visit you, and I like everything insanely. We play with strong rivals and are only tuning for the best.
 
 
— Tell us a little about the Belarusian team, what kind of team is it?
 
It seems to me that our team this year is the strongest team in the history of Belarus' participation in “Art Football”. We have an amazing squad. Our captain Albert Skorokhod gathered those who can play football and understand what football is. Yes, these are not professional football players — we are not all from this sphere. We are all artists, musicians, presenters, singers, but our composition is really good. In our subgroup and throughout the tournament there are very strong rivals, but the spirit is very militant, and I hope that everything will turn out.
 
 
— Are you waiting for the match against the Russia?
 
Of course we are waiting! Firstly, I'm very glad to see all my colleagues, friends, with whom we communicate warmly. The Russian national team comes to Belarus for friendly matches, we come to Russia, and it's wonderful! We are all friends and we are forming a truly domestic atmosphere, which I hope will be felt during the Russia-Belarus match. So we are really waiting for this game, but who will win — time will tell. We meet on the 30th of May.
 
I already talked to Garik Bogomazov and with Narciss Pierre from Russian team — the guys are waiting for this match and they know that Alexander Hleb, my good friend and the best football player in the history of the Republic of Belarus, will fly to him. I think that in the next 10, 20, 30, and maybe 40 years there wount be any player like Hleb in Belarus. He is a man who played in the Arsenal, Barcelona, ​​and Stuttgart. This is the captain of the national team. Russia also has a stunning line-up: Ruslan Nigmatullin is on the gate, Dmitry Loskov is playing... It's a great honor for us to play football with such stars!
 
Thanks “Art-football” for this opportunity. We are very much looking forward to the game, and I hope that a huge number of admirers of beautiful football and music will come to the stands to support their favorite teams.
 
 
— In the first match Belarus beat last year's champions. What were the emotions?
 
Emotions are only positive! It was very important to win in the first match. From the point of view of psychology, this is necessary for the team, especially when playing against world champions. We were tuned to a positive result, waited a long time for the match, but everything turned out as it happened. We won, 10 minutes were happy, after that we forgot about it. Ahead is an important match with the Russian team, so we is not relaxing.
 
 
— What did you feel when you took out the “double”?
 
That everything is a victory. Relief and, of course, joy. These are my first goals for the national team at the World Cup! Until recently, we could not believe that we would keep the victory, but we all adhered to the training of the coach, so the most important thing is a victory, and my goals are just a cherry on the cake, nothing more.
 
 
 
On May 30, the Belarusian team will play the last match in the group stage of the World Football Championship among artists with the Russian team. As part of the Belarusian team on the field will be a football legend Alexander Hleb.
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