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UEFA decides to move Champions League Final out of Russia

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On Thursday, February 24th, 2022 the major European football organization, UEFA, has decided that they will no longer feature this season’s Champions League final in St. Petersburg, Russia following Russia’s attacks on their neighboring country of Ukraine according to sources at the Associated Press.

An unexpected as well as extraordinary meeting of the UEFA executive committee is now scheduled to be held on Friday, February 25th, 2022 in order for the congregation to discuss the geopolitical crisis that is presently taking place as of this week, and when officials are ready to confirm that they will be taking the May 28th, 2022 major featured sporting event of the Champions League final out of St. Petersburg, Russia, a person with knowledge of the process will announce the official changes possibly as early as the end of this week. The person disclosing this information spoke under the condition of remaining anonymous in order to protect the current and ongoing private talks of UEFA.

UEFA confirmed there is a very private meeting scheduled for 9:00 a. m. GMT on Friday, February 25th, 2022.

Following the evolution of the situation between Russia and Ukraine in the last 24 hours, the UEFA president has decided to call an extraordinary meeting of the executive committee …. in order to evaluate the situation and take all necessary decisions,” UEFA disclosed via a recent statement.

The British government as well as fan support groups have been recently requested UEFA to no longer play the Champions League final match in St. Petersburg, Russia where the stadium is sponsored by the Russian state – owned energy giant named, Gazprom.

On this tragic day, our thoughts are with everyone in Ukraine, our friends, colleagues, members, & their loved ones,” the Fans Supporters Europe group tweeted on Thursday, February 24th, 2022. “Given the events unfolding, we expect an imminent announcement from UEFA on the relocation of the Champions League final.”

The Ukrainian Premier League has just suspended operations on Thursday, February 24th, 2022 due to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s ultimate and difficult decision to impose martial law. The league has been on a 2 – month winter break, and it was originally set to resume play this Friday, February 25th, 2022, but a lot of things that have been happening out that way obviously have halted the normal state of life for the Ukrainian population. They have not provided any planned date to restart the 2021 – 2022 Ukrainian Premier League season as of now.

The International Paralympic Committee said it has been in discussions with sports officials in Ukraine as well as Russia as their teams were preparing to travel to China for the beginning of the Paralympic Games next week, but at the moment things are very complicated and there are more important issues at hand for the time being.

“The IPC is in dialogue with both the Ukrainian and Russian Paralympic Committees ahead of the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games,” the IPC stated.As a politically neutral organization, the IPC’s focus remains on the upcoming Games rather than the ongoing situation.

Russia’s name, flag, and anthem have already been banned from the March 4th to March 13th for this year’s Paralympics in Beijing, China over previous doping issues and disagreements. The Russian team is due to compete as the RPC, short for Russian Paralympic Committee, as they competed under a similar title at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games which were also held in Beijing, China this month.

Sources:

Harris, Rob. “UEFA to move Champions League final out of Russia”. The Associated Press. February 24, 2022.