Russia to be banned from Euro 2024, Ukraine claims
The Russian men’s national football team will effectively be banned from the 2024 European Championship after UEFA decided to exclude them from the qualifying draw, Ukrainian officials have claimed. UEFA is formally discussing the situation at a meeting of its Executive Committee in Croatia on Tuesday.
Russian teams at all levels were initially banned by UEFA and global counterpart FIFA at the end of February, following the onset of the conflict in Ukraine.
The sanctions meant the Russian men’s team was prevented from attempting to qualify for the FIFA World Cup in Qatar which will be held later this year.
UEFA has since extended its ban to cover the 2022/23 season, although it did not rule on potential Russian participation at Euro 2024.
In the build-up to the Euro 2024 qualifying draw in Frankfurt on October 9, UEFA has faced pressure from Ukraine and tournament hosts Germany to ensure that Russia is excluded from the names on the list.
“The Russians have nothing to prepare for,” wrote Ukrainian Association of Football (UAF) president Andrey Pavelko in a social media message on Tuesday, claiming it had already been determined that Russia will be banned.
“At least until 2024, they won’t be at official international football competitions,” Pavelko added.
Euro 2024 will take place across ten German cities from June 14 to July 14, 2024, with qualifying for the tournament getting underway in March of next year.
As hosts, Germany will play at the tournament automatically, while the 23 remaining places will be available through the qualifying process.
Russia was among the hosts of the last edition of the Euros, which was a delayed event held in the summer of 2021 because of the pandemic.
St. Petersburg welcomed seven matches in total at the special 60th anniversary pan-continental version of the tournament.