January 28, 2023


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Court of Arbitration for Sport dismisses Russian FA and clubs’ appeals over FIFA and UEFA bans

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The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has upheld FIFA and UEFA’s decision to ban Russian national teams from their competitions.

Both governing bodies imposed the suspensions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

The Football Union of Russia (FUR) lodged an appeal with CAS, with the men’s national team having been preventing from trying to qualify for the World Cup in Qatar and the women unable to feature in the European Championship – which started this month.

Zenit, Sochi, CSKA Moscow and Dynamo Moscow also challenged UEFA’s decision to leave them unable to play in European competitions.

CAS on Friday revealed all six challenges were dismissed by a panel of arbitrators.

A CAS statement said: “In all of these cases, the panel determined that the escalation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, and the public and government responses worldwide, created unforeseen and unprecedented circumstances to which FIFA and UEFA had to respond.

“In determining that Russian teams and clubs should not participate in competitions under their aegis while such circumstances persisted, the panel held that both parties acted within the scope of the discretion granted to them under their respective statutes and regulations.

“In so holding, the Panel found it unnecessary to characterise the nature of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, but only to focus on the consequences of such conflict for the competitions affected.

“The panel finds it unfortunate that the current military operations in Ukraine, for which Russian football teams, clubs, and players have themselves no responsibility, had, by reason of the decisions of FIFA and UEFA, such an adverse effect on them and Russian football generally, but those effects were, in the panel’s view, offset by the need for the secure and orderly conduct of football events for the rest of the world.”

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