Football: Faeser against participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes

Football “Completely the wrong way”

Interior Ministry opposes DFB decision on Russia issue

As of: 8:09 p.m. | Reading time: 2 minutes

Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) has recently repeatedly spoken out against the return of Russian athletes

Source: picture alliance/dpa/Arne Dedert

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UEFA’s decision to allow Russian youth teams to take part in football tournaments again is causing debate. The Federal Ministry of the Interior sharply criticizes the DFB’s vote in the case.

A decision by the German Football Association (DFB) is now reaching into federal politics. The Federal Ministry of the Interior, led by Nancy Faeser (SPD), has criticized the return of Russian youth teams and positioned itself contrary to the DFB’s stance on the matter.

As long as Russian President Vladimir Putin continues his war of aggression in Ukraine, it is “the completely wrong way to open the door to international sports competitions for Russia and Belarus,” the ministry said in response to a request from the WDR magazine “Sport inside”. According to the Interior Ministry’s announcement, Faeser, who is also responsible for sport in her role as Interior Minister, has repeatedly spoken out against the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes. “Also towards UEFA,” emphasized the federal authority. The full solidarity of sport must continue to apply to Ukraine.

UEFA apparently wants to consult again

The European Football Association (Uefa) allows Russian youth teams to take part in association competitions under certain conditions; The world association Fifa recently made a similar decision. The German Football Association followed this decision and approved it in the person of Hans-Joachim Watzke, Managing Director of Borussia Dortmund, in the UEFA Executive Committee. DFB President Bernd Neuendorf is also a member of the Fifa Council. In response to the decision, several national associations in Europe, in addition to Ukraine, announced a boycott of games against Russian teams.

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The handling of the issue will apparently be discussed again at the UEFA Executive Committee meeting in Nyon on Tuesday. According to information from “Sport inside”, the topic is on the agenda. It is therefore unclear whether there will be another vote.

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Watzke and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, who is also part of the executive committee, recently supported UEFA’s line of argument that children should not be punished for the actions of adults.


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