CAS upholds Russian appeals against footballer expulsions

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The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has confirmed that the Russian Football Union (RUF) has appealed its expulsion from world football.

Following their illegal invasion of Ukraine, Russia were expelled from the upcoming World Cup qualifiers with football associations in their squad expressly stating that they would not play against a Russian team under any name.

FIFA initially proposed a plan to allow Russia to play Poland under a neutral name and neutral flag at a neutral venue, before taking a tough stance the following day.

UEFA also expelled Spartak Moscow from the Europa League, with RB Leipzig instead granted a bye to the quarter-finals.

Following FIFA and UEFA’s rulings, the RUF reacted angrily, claiming the two bodies had acted without a “legal basis”, and said the reluctance of the Polish, Czech and Swedish federations to meet with them during the playoffs “violated the principle of sport”. and the rules of fair play”.

The three football associations were challenged by the RUF in their appeal.

CAS also confirmed that the Russian union has requested a suspension of the sentences while their case is pending. This would effectively allow Russia back in this month’s World Cup qualifiers and Spartak back in the Europa League.

CAS said it would make a decision on a stay in the coming days.

Whatever CAS decides, April’s draw for the Qatar World Cup group stage will take place with a few holes still to be filled.

Scotland’s qualifying semi-final with Ukraine at Hampden Park was postponed on Tuesday, following a petition from the invaded country’s football association.

The move will also delay the eventual playoff final meeting between Scotland or Ukraine and Austria or Wales.

CAS statement:

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) recorded earlier today the appeals filed by the Russian Football Union (FUR) against the decisions taken on February 28, 2022 by the Bureau of the FIFA Council (the FIFA appeal ) and the UEFA Executive Committee (the UEFA Appeal) (collectively, the contested decisions) to suspend the participation of all Russian teams and clubs in their respective competitions until further notice.

FIFA’s appeal was filed against the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the
Union of European Football Associations (UEFA), Polish Football Association, Swedish Football Federation
Association, the Czech Football Association, the Football Association of Montenegro and the Maltese Association
Football association.

UEFA’s appeal was filed against UEFA, Hellenic Football Federation, Belarusian Football Federation
Federation, Danish Football Association, Luxembourg Football Association, Austrian Association
Football Association, the Maltese Football Association, the Portuguese Football Federation, the English Federation
Football Association, the Spanish Football Federation, the Irish Football Federation and the French Federation
Football association.

In its appeals, the FUR asks the CAS to set aside the contested Decisions and to reinstate all the
teams and clubs for participation in FIFA and UEFA competitions. With every declaration of
appeal, the FUR also filed an application for a stay of execution of each contested decision.

The CAS Registry initiated two separate arbitration proceedings and, in accordance with the Code
of Sports-related Arbitration (the arbitration rules governing CAS proceedings), will seek the position of
respondents with respect to FUR’s requests to stay the execution of the Contested Decisions and with respect to the organization and planning of each arbitration proceeding.

CAS expects to be able to share further information about the proceedings through a press release
in a few days once a decision has been made on the stay applications.

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