Medvedev, King Tout Football

APSpanish King Juan Carlos and President Dmitry Medvedev visiting an exhibition of Russian photographers Thursday.
Visiting Spanish King Juan Carlos and President Dmitry Medvedev congratulated each other on their national teams' success in football, saying ties in other areas should be equally successful.

"We've learned how to find various ways out of various situations. Even at the European Championship we were able to qualify for the quarterfinals from the same group," Medvedev told the king during their first meeting. "This is a good achievement."

"I think we need to congratulate each other," Juan Carlos said.

Spain thrashed Russia 4-1 in Group D's opening game in the UEFA championship last week. On Wednesday, however, Russia grabbed the last quarterfinal slot, beating Sweden 2-0.

"I think there are a lot of opportunities ahead of us. We have to do a lot," Juan Carlos said. "Our will is obvious. Our peoples love each other, and our leaders know each other. We only have to put our hands to the task."

Medvedev said ties, especially in business, have developed well. He noted that the king was a frequent and welcome guest in Russia. The king made his first visit to the country in 1984, nine years after assuming the throne.

Medvedev and the king also visited a gallery of pictures by Russian photographers, including those by Francisco Infante, a Russian photographer of Spanish origin. Later, the king met with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, upon Putin's return from a trip to Kursk.

Juan Carlos does not hold official talks with heads of state. At the Kremlin, he and a beaming Medvedev -- with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his foreign aide Sergei Prikhodko at his side -- avoided the official oval table for a less formal side-table by a fireplace.