World Cup Performer Robbie Williams Made Quite an Eyebrow-Raising Statement
News | 14.06.2018
It’s been a minute since English singer Robbie Williams, a member of former boy band Take That in its ’90s heyday, has graced a globally-televised stage. At Thursday’s 2018 World Cup opening ceremony at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, however, the performer got to do just that. And he used his moment in the spotlight to grace audiences with a number of his classic hits — as well as to flip the bird at the cameras during his show.
Although the controversial moment was not televised on the ITV broadcast to British viewers, others watching — and all of Twitter, once the clip was picked up and circulated — certainly did catch his hand gesture. While some found his surprise use of the middle finger disrespectful to everyone watching, others applauded Williams’s rebellious attitude on one of the world’s biggest stages.
Williams was joined for the throwback pop performance by Russian singer Aida Garifullina and a bevy of sequin-costumed dancers. After they concluded their show, the Saudi Arabia and Russian teams kicked off the first match of the Cup, with Russia handily winning 5-0 as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and President Vladimir Putin watched from the stands.
Robbie Williams opening #WorldCup2018 in style 😂😂
— World Cup 2018 Related (@WorldCup18Info) June 14, 2018
#RobbieWilliams with a message to his critics who said he sold his soul to Putin for this gig. Legendary response. #WordCup2018 pic.twitter.com/OJdJiP7XPb
— 90thMin ⚽️ (@90thMin) June 14, 2018
This game so bad, Robbie Williams currently leading voting for World Cup MVP
— Men in Blazers (@MenInBlazers) June 14, 2018
Robbie Williams. Absolute British legend of all time.
— VUJ (@DavidVujanic) June 14, 2018
Turned on FOX just in time to see Robbie Williams give the middle finger to be worldwide audience. God, I love the World Cup.
— Luis Paez-Pumar (@lppny) June 14, 2018
@robbiewilliams Literally giving his critics the middle finger and singing "But I did this for FREE" #WorldCup pic.twitter.com/cFYbAGDOOW
— Marj. (@bouncebckbltrx) June 14, 2018
Robbie Williams getting everyone right in the mood for World Cup ‘98 there..
— Kevin Bridges (@kevinbridges86) June 14, 2018