FIFA released its first measures after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The football governing body condemned the action and ordered the country to act without anthem and flag.
As in the last Olympic Games, the country will operate under another name: ‘Russian Football Union’.
In addition to restrictions on the country name and use of the flag, no international competitions will be held on the territory of Russia.
That is, the selection will have to send its games in neutral territory and without spectators.
The measures of the FIFA council were taken in coordination with UEFA and the six presidents of the Confederations. They also follow the recommendations of the IOC (International Olympic Committee). Additional measures or sanctions, including a possible exclusion from competitions, are not ruled out in the near future.
Requests from the Polish Football Federation, the Football Association of the Czech Republic and the Swedish Football Federation not to face Russia in the Qatar Cup play-off, because of the invasion of Ukraine, put pressure on FIFA, which claims to have dialogued with the associations. She also informs that she maintains close contact to seek appropriate and acceptable solutions together.
However, Cezary Kulesza, president of the Polish Federation, announced on his social networks that he does not accept the decision and that he has no intention of taking the field against the Russians. The two teams have a play-off scheduled for March 22. “We are not interested in participating in this game of appearances. Our stance remains intact: the Polish national team will not play Russia, no matter what the team name is,” he posted on Twitter.
In the statement released, FIFA criticized the use of force and said that it sympathized with the victims of the situation, classified as shocking and worrying by the body. “Violence is never a solution and FIFA expresses its deepest solidarity with all people affected by what is happening in Ukraine,” it said.
The entity also reinforced the request for the return of peace in the place and guaranteed to be in contact with the Ukrainian Football Association. In addition, members of the Ukrainian football community are also being supported by FIFA if they want to leave the country. “The sports movement must be united in its decisions on this issue and that sport must continue to be a vector of peace and hope,” he said in the note.