Urgent meeting at UEFA, three Euroleague games postponed, Abramovich banned from England… Reflections of the conflict on the world of sports


This is one of the indirect consequences of the occupation of Russian troops on the territory of Ukraine on Thursday, February 24. Many international sports federations are asked to take measures and sanctions against Russia. Not all have reacted, but athletes, clubs and local federations are raising their voices to demand answers.

UEFA called an emergency meeting

The location of the Champions League final, the partnership with Gazprom and the World Cup play-off matches to be held in Russia will be set on the agenda, and will be urgently convened by the Executive Committee on Friday, February 25. Aleksander Čeferin, President of UEFA. The Champions League final, scheduled for 28 May in Saint Petersburg, is likely Times and D’Associated press.

Regarding the World Cup play-off matches, the Polish federation, which was supposed to go to Russia on 24 March, demanded that the match be moved. This also applies to the Czech Republic and Sweden, potential rivals of the Russians in the second round. These federations “Express their firm position that the play-offs are not played on the territory of Russia”, Can we read it in the joint press release?

The Gazprom file is the most complicated file. The Russian gas giant, the main economic sponsor of UEFA, even sits on the Executive Committee together with Alexander Dyukov, CEO of Gazprom Neft. A partnership tarnished by the strong relationship between Vladimir Putin and the gas supplier.

Schalke pulled Gazprom out of their shirts

At the heart of the turmoil, Gazprom has already suffered the first blow on Thursday (February 24th). After 16 years of existence, the name of the Russian company will no longer appear on the white and blue jerseys of the Schalke club. Gelsenkirchen. The historic German club, which is now in the minor leagues, confirmed its partnership with the gas supplier earlier this week, a decision taken after the Russian invasion.

Another result on the banks of the Ruhr, Matthias Warnig, the German CEO of the company that operates the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, has resigned from Schalke 04’s supervisory board. The businessman was the target of sanctions decided by the US on Wednesday.

3 Euroleague games postponed

Regular season leader Barcelona said in a statement that it would not be traveling to Saint Petersburg for a game scheduled for Friday against Zenit. The Euroleague has therefore decided to postpone this meeting and the other two games of Russian teams Bayern Munich-CSKA Moscow and Baskonia-Unics Kazan, scheduled for Thursday.

The Euroleague organization should therefore address the issue because Barcelona also needs to play in Moscow on Sunday. In addition, three Russian clubs are in the top 8 and are therefore on their way to qualifying for the playoffs. Therefore, new decisions are expected in the coming hours.

Formula 1 looks forward to Sochi Grand Prix

At a press conference on the second day of pre-season testing, Sebastian Vettel stated that he would not go to Russia to compete if the Sochi Grand Prix, scheduled for September 25, was resumed. Max Verstappen followed suit, believing that there should be no race in warring countries. F1 management announced that team managers will meet on Thursday evening to discuss the situation.

Uralkali Haas F1 Team is also leaving. The American team used a near-power Russian firm as the main sponsor. The influence of a single seat in the colors of Russia is huge and its importance in sports choices, especially pilot Nikita Mazepin, derives from it. On Thursday, February 24, the team decided to remove the Russian colors from their single seat for the third day of testing on Friday.

Roman Abramovich, persona non grata in England

He was banned from England for being close to Chelsea owner Vladimir Putin. It is a result of the initial sanctions taken by Boris Johnson and his government against Russian oligarchs in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Measures that could also affect the economy by freezing the assets of these Russian personalities in different markets.

Some lawmakers even called for Roman Abramovich to lose his title to the Chelsea club. A situation that could also pose a problem in Monaco, which owns two-thirds of another Russian oligarch, Dmitri Rybolovlev. Financial sanctions against Russia and its citizens can therefore have an impact.