Saturday, December 10, 2022



Champions League – FIFA World Cup – War between Russia and Ukraine forces changes | Playon99 News



UEFA has decided: the Champions League final will not be played in St. Petersburg and will be moved to France. In addition, the European play-off for a place in the FIFA World Cup is in danger because Poland, Sweden, and the Czech Republic do not want to travel to Russian soil.

By Facundo Di Bona (@facudibona).

The war between Russia and Ukraine awakened defense mechanisms not only at the military level but also in the world of soccer.

The directors of each Federation took advantage of the conflict to put their hands to work and try to make some profit or exert pressure on the nation presided by Vladimir Putin.

The most important final in Europe this year was going to be played in Russia, more precisely in the Saint Petersburg Arena, but UEFA decided to remove the venue due to the war conflict.

From Russia, they did not stay behind and with their heads down, but the Kremlin came out automatically to respond to the European organization:

“It is a disgrace. St. Petersburg could have provided the ideal conditions to hold such a soccer festival”

UEFA, which shielded itself in “a moment of unprecedented crisis,” is the same that brought international tournaments to Baku, Azerbaijan, and voted Qatar to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

This decision is to be expected from an organization that usually gives in with the major powers. In turn, the UEFA Executive Committee moved the final to the Stade de France in Saint-Denis.

The last time the Parisian stadium hosted the Champions League final was in 2006, when Barcelona, led by Ronaldinho, beat Arsenal 2-1.

The stat? Lionel Messi lifted his first Champions League that year with the number 30 and now he will have the chance to play a final there again with the same number that started his legend in soccer.

What will happen with the European playoffs?

In the midst of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the three countries that will have to play against the country led by Vladimir Putin made an unusual request to UEFA.

Poland, which will have to face Russia in the semifinals, and its potential rivals in a final that will define the place in the FIFA World Cup -Sweden and the Czech Republic- requested before UEFA the loss of the Russian team’s home ground due to lack of security.

What does this mean? UEFA will have to look for a neutral territory for the matches where the Russian national team must host their European counterparts.

The Committee has not yet discussed this issue and there is only one month left for the qualifiers that will define who will go to the FIFA World Cup, but they left a precedent.

UEFA decided that Russian – and Ukrainian – clubs will have to play on neutral ground during European competitions. After Zenit’s elimination, the only Russian representative still standing is Spartak Moscow.

The team from the capital will play in the Round of 16 of the UEFA Europa League against RB Leipzig but will have to leave the country to play at another venue.



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