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UEFA set to move Champions League final as Schalke 04 remove Gazprom sponsor


 

The Champions League final is set to be moved away from Saint Petersburg following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, it has emerged.

UEFA have called an emergency meeting for Friday morning, in which it is expected that they will announce that the competition's showpiece will be moved away from Russia, with London emerging as an early candidate to host the fixture.

A statement has also been made by UEFA, condemning the violence.

'UEFA shares the international community’s significant concern for the security situation developing in Europe and strongly condemns the ongoing Russian military invasion in Ukraine', they wrote.

'As the governing body of European football, UEFA is working tirelessly to develop and promote football according to common European values such as peace and respect for human rights, in the spirit of the Olympic Charter. We remain resolute in our solidarity with the football community in Ukraine and stand ready to extend our hand to the Ukrainian people.'

'We are dealing with this situation with the utmost seriousness and urgency. Decisions will be taken by the UEFA Executive Committee and announced tomorrow.'

What else has been done?

Following the invasion, much ire has been pointed at UEFA's chief sponsor, Gazprom.

Bundesliga club Schalke 04, who are also sponsored by the Russian oil company, have announced that they will remove the sponsor from their shirts, replacing it simply with the club name, as a result of 'recent developments'.

Meanwhile, claims were made in the House of Commons that documents have emerged surrounding the corruption of Russian Oligarch and Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich, including paying for political influence in Russia.

Labour MP Chris Bryan told the house:

''I have got hold of a leaked document from 2019 from the Home Office which says in relation to Mr Abramovich - As part of HMG's Russia strategy aimed at targeting illicit finance and malign activity, Abramovich remains of interest to HMG due to his links to the Russian state and his public association with corrupt activity and practices.

Roman Abramovich

''An example of this is Abramovich admitting in court proceedings that he paid for political influence.

''Therefore HMG is focused on ensuring that individuals linked to illicit finance and malign activity are unable to base themselves in the UK and will use the relevant tools at its disposal, including immigration powers to prevent this''.


Ben Browning

Ben Browning

Football writer and analyst. Long-time writer of all things Arsenal and avid watcher of European football. Happy to discuss all things football over on Twitter.



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