Estonian Football Association takes a stand: no matches against Russia

06.10.2023 00:25

In response to UEFA's decision to allow Russia's U17 teams back into international competitions, the Estonian Football Association has declared a firm stance: Estonian national teams will not play against Russia.

UEFA's executive committee made the decision to reintegrate Russia's U17 teams without prior consultation with the Estonian Football Association. The association expressed regret that they were not involved in the decision-making process and emphasized their opposition to it.

While UEFA has chosen to proceed, the Estonian Football Association refuses to comply with this decision. They are resolute in their stance, stating that Estonian national teams will not engage in matches against Russia. This position has been communicated clearly to UEFA from the outset.

The Estonian Football Association also reaffirms its unwavering support for Ukraine and opposition to Russian aggression. They hope for a swift end to the conflict in Ukraine, enabling the Ukrainian football community to resume their activities.

Over the past year, the association and the local football community have taken various actions to support Ukraine, raising over 60,000 euros, expressing solidarity at Estonian league, cup, and national team matches, and conducting charity events. They have also provided assistance to Ukrainian youth participating in Estonian championships, organized a charity match, engaged with Ukrainian parliament members, hosted youth football camps, and more. Additionally, the Estonian Football Association was one of the four associations that voted against adding Russian as an official language at the FIFA congress last April.

Furthermore, the association plays a role in Estonia's national defense, with the Estonian defense forces recognizing their support for employees participating in defense exercises.

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