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World Cup draw cock-ups: dropouts, dropped balls and dresses

Dividing teams into groups for a football tournament should be easy but nothing is ever simple when Fifa is in charge

By Richard Foster for The Agony and the Ecstasy of the Guardian Sport Network

Gary Lineker has faced accusations of hypocrisy after condemning Fifa as a “revolting organisation” and then agreeing to co-host its World Cup draw in Moscow on Friday. Lineker is not the first person to have found participating in the ceremony an awkward experience.

The practice of inviting celebrities began at the 1990 World Cup, when Luciano Pavarotti and Sophia Loren were among the famous faces onstage in Rome. Four years later, Franz Beckenbauer was joined in Las Vegas by Evander Holyfield and Robin Williams, who played the whole thing for laughs, pulling on a glove like an overly enthusiastic doctor and instructing Sepp Blatter to “turn your head to the side and cough”.

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