Mosquitoes, midges pester players during a World Cup match

By |  July 5, 2018
Photo credit: DocJ96/Source/CC BY-NC

Who knew midges were soccer fans? PHOTO: DocJ96/Source/CC BY-NC

During a Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup match in Volgograd, Russia, soccer players and fans complained of being bombarded by mosquitoes and midges, according to the Guardian.

Both FIFA and the city of Volgograd were aware of the possibility of an insect problem, because of the city’s location in southwest Russia, and the stadium’s location on the Volga River. Despite deploying helicopters equipped with pesticides to the nearby marshlands, the bugs persisted, according to the Washington Post.

In addition to the midges and mosquitoes, Reuters reported gnats also being present in the arena. As a way to control the pests, the city used vanilla concentrate as a repellent.

Harry Kane, captain of England’s team, said they were covered in bug spray, but still got flies in their eyes, noses and mouths.

Though the players were allowed to wear and apply bug spray before the game and at halftime, fans were not permitted to bring any to the match as all liquids were confiscated at the entrance. A total of four games are being played at the Volgograd arena during the World Cup.

Despite having to play through clouds of insects, England managed to defeat Tunisia 2-1.

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