For many, the World Cup is as much about the chance to explore a new country as packing in as many games as possible.
The "PodcastOne Sports Now " guest host Rob Harris takes listeners on a tour of Russia as he travels from city to city covering the tournament for The Associated Press.
Harris wanders down Nikolskaya Street close to Red Square in Moscow, speaking to fans from across the world who gather each night, making the most of laws usually banning unsanctioned public gathering being suspended for the World Cup. The chants heard on the street reinforce that even soccer's showpiece isn't a break from geopolitical tensions.
AP writer Mike Corder joins the podcast to discuss how soccer and philosophy are mixing in Kaliningrad, and we hear from a South Korea fan at the Immanuel Kant museum.
England coach Gareth Southgate faced a dilemma in his country's last group-stage game against Belgium. A place in the round of 16 already was secure, so players could be rested. A loss would also put England on a potentially easier route the final. England didn't try to lose, but it did anyway.
Former Colombia forward Juan Pablo Angel reflects on that decision by Southgate as his country takes on England in the round of 16. The former Aston Villa player recalls moving into Gareth Southgate's house in central England in 2001 and reflects on how England's coach always had the making of a manager.
And Russia is already through to the quarterfinals after a penalty shootout win over Spain. The AP's Graham Dunbar discusses how Russia pulled off the surprise victory over the 2010 World Cup winner.
For more AP podcasts: https://apnews.com/tag/Podcasts