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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Putin Invites CSKA Moscow to His Home

ReutersPutin kicking a ball as CSKA Moscow soccer players watch during their meeting at Putin's residence Saturday.
President Vladimir Putin hosted CSKA Moscow's players and coaches at his Novo-Ogaryovo home near Moscow on Saturday to congratulate them on their UEFA Cup victory.

In return, Putin got a gold shirt with his name on the back.

Praising the club for a "brilliant result" in Wednesday's 3-1 victory over Sporting Lisbon, Putin said he had watched the entire match. The come-from-behind win produced the first European title for a Russian team.

"This was not a random victory. It was a victory achieved through hard work and talent," Putin said.

CSKA coach Valery Gazzayev handed a soccer ball to Putin, who bounced it on an oriental rug and placed it in the trophy.

Brazilian striker Vagner Love reminded him it was a soccer and not basketball team he was hosting. Putin then kicked the ball up and caught it.

"I don't consider myself a good soccer specialist or a knowledgeable fan with experience," said Putin, a judo and alpine skiing enthusiast.

Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov wondered out loud how much champagne the cup would hold. Gazzayev said they had tried to find out, but the cup leaked.