England’s youth teams will no longer face Russia in football matches, according to the Football Association (FA). This decision comes after UEFA’s announcement to allow Russia’s Under-17 teams to participate in European competitions again, marking their return since the invasion of Ukraine. In February 2022, UEFA suspended all Russian teams, both national and club sides, from their competitions as a consequence of the invasion. Additionally, UEFA terminated its partnership with Russian energy company Gazprom.
During a meeting in Limassol, Cyprus, UEFA’s Executive Committee stated that children should not be penalized for the actions of adults. Consequently, they decided to readmit Russian minor teams to their competitions this season. UEFA has requested its administration to propose a technical solution that would enable the inclusion of Russian U17 teams, even if draws have already taken place. However, Russian teams’ matches will be held outside of Russia and will not display the country’s flag, anthem, or national kit.
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin emphasized the importance of not excluding children from competitions, as it violates their fundamental right to holistic development and leads to direct discrimination against them. The FA expressed disagreement with UEFA’s decision and confirmed that England teams will not play against Russia in UEFA Age Grade Competitions.
The U-17 men’s European Championship finals are scheduled to take place in Cyprus next year, while the women’s tournament will be held in Sweden. RushHourDaily has reached out to the Ukrainian Association of Football (UAF) for comment.
In addition to the decision regarding Russian teams, UEFA announced Armand Duka as the successor to former Spanish Federation (RFEF) boss Luis Rubiales. Rubiales resigned as a vice president of UEFA after kissing player Jenni Hermoso on the lips following Spain’s World Cup victory, which sparked controversy among players and fans. Duka, who currently heads Albania’s soccer federation and has been a member of UEFA’s Executive Committee since 2019, will assume the position.
The article was reported by Aadi Nair, with additional reporting by Tommy Lund. It was edited by Christian Radnedge and Toby Davis, and adheres to The Thomson RushHourDaily Trust Principles.
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