HAVING achieved world peace, or at least that part of the world that speaks Korean, maybe Donald Trump could jump on Air Force One and head to Moscow for a chat with his old chum Vladimir Putin.

Imagine Donald and Vlad sorting out denuclearisation of the entire world at half-time during the World Cup final – and why not? Don’t forget that this whole process of stabilising the Korean Peninsula started with the Winter Olympics just days after it looked as though there might be war between the North and South, a war that would have seen the remaining few of us on a nuked planet fighting the next world war with bows and arrows.

READ MORE: Heavy global police presence lands in Russia for World Cup

So why not World Cup diplomacy between the US and Russia? Oops, like us Scots, the US did not qualify, having lost to Trinidad and Tobago on the final day of the qualification tournament, a result which sent mighty Panama to the finals for a meeting with England – lose that one and English football might as well pack it in and take up tiddlywinks.

It’s a great pity that the US have failed to qualify for the first time since 1986 as it would have been entertaining to see Trump turn up to cheer on the Americans. His tweets on the offside law might have been legendary, but hey ho, we’ll just have to content ourselves with his pal Putin strutting the World Cup stage.

Let’s hope Vlad’s strong-man image is not just bluster in one respect. Ever since Russia was awarded the tournament by an institutionally corrupt Fifa, I have been fearing the hooligan element in the home nation and, to a much lesser extent, the Ultras that follow England – neither lot are football fans, they are just scum looking for an excuse for a fight.

It appears that Putin has ordered a crackdown on Russia’s most violent hooligans who have been well warned that they will get a visit from the Russian security service, the FSB, if there’s any nonsense from them. The FSB are truly feared in Russia because they tend to “disappear” people for a long time, so hopefully the bad boys will get the message and stay at home.

The UK should send the SAS to give England’s hooligans the same treatment, for I really do fear that if there is “provokatsiya”, as the Russians call provocation, by English fans then there will be blood on the streets.

Let us also hope that the hooligans and the various terrorist groups take a holiday over the next month or so. It is depressing that we should have to think of such issues affecting the World Cup, but ever since Black September attacked the Munich Olympics in 1972, major sporting events have been a security risk.

Safe out, safe in, must be the watchword for all the fans going to Russia, and let’s just hope for a tournament where the headlines are made ON the pitch.

The big question is who is going to win it? For a start, it won’t be Russia.

From all the evidence I have seen, the host nation will really struggle to make an impact, not least because their seeding as one of the top eight nations in the draw was totally at odds with their official Fifa world ranking of 65th – the lowest of any team in the tournament.

It was all part of the “fix” to give Russia an easier group but it hasn’t worked out that way – Uruguay and Egypt will make the Russians’ qualification task very difficult. Even Saudi Arabia is ranked above them, albeit by only two places.

Russia’s warm-up matches have been depressing for them – they have not won in seven games, through their draw with Turkey last week saw an improved performance.

Having looked at their possible route past the group stages, I can’t see England making it past the quarter-finals. They should make the last 16 as they must surely beat Tunisia and Panama, mustn’t they? And then you remember Euro 2016 and Iceland ...

What a pity that Spain and Portugal must meet so early – again as the result of the seeding for Russia. Their clash would have been worthy of a final and either of them could be there at the end.

A lively outsider must be Uruguay and their young midfielders could be the stars of the tournament.

I am not sure the French team is fully mature enough to show its vast potential, and for the life of me I cannot see Argentina having the inner belief to win one for Messi. If the wee man gets sufficient help they can do it.

Like all football purists, I desperately want Brazil to play to their best and win their sixth World Cup. Neymar will have to be at his brilliant best, however, and I’m not certain he will be.

So who’s going to win it? Don’t be silly – Germany will win the World Cup, especially as their usual nemesis Italy isn’t in Russia.