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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

England could have no journalists at World Cup after Russian threats to UK

U.K. foreign secretary Boris Johnson says Britain may not participate normally in the World Cup if Russia is proven to be behind the unexplained illness of a former spy.
With 100 days to go until the FIFA World Cup, Ian Darke joins a group of ESPN writers and experts for a roundtable discussion about what to expect in Russia this summer.

England are facing the risk of playing in this summer's World Cup without their media being present at the event after Russian Foreign Minister Maria Zakharova threatened to expel all UK media from the country.

Zakharova was reacting to a warning from communications regulator Ofcom that it could strip broadcaster Russia Today of its UK operating license, if the UK government find Moscow was behind the poisoning of double agent Sergei Skripal.

 "I can tell you right now that not a single British media outlet will be working in our country if they shut RT down," Zakharova told Russian state television Rossiya 1.

Tensions between the UK and Russia have been escalating in the past days, amid boycott threats from UK officials.

The 2018 World Cup is scheduled to take place from June 14 to July 15.

Zakharova's statement comes days after UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said Britain may not participate "in the normal way" in the World Cup in Russia if Moscow is proven to be behind Skripal's poisoning.

"Nobody knows anything about the poison ... including [UK Prime Minister] Theresa May, who has no real facts on her hands," Zakharova responded.

"Everything that we are being told by the TV and the media, when they say that there's Russian propaganda and so on -- this is typical British propaganda, which is firing from almost all of its weapons now."

Follow @ESPNFC on Twitter to keep up with the latest football updates.

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