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What Changes at Qatar World Cup & Women's Euros as FIFA, UEFA Ban Russia From Int'l Football?

© REUTERS / DADO RUVICFIFA and UEFA logos are displayed in front of the Russian flag in this illustration taken, February 28, 2022
FIFA and UEFA logos are displayed in front of the Russian flag in this illustration taken, February 28, 2022 - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.03.2022
After Vladimir Putin ordered a special military operation to demilitarise Ukraine last Thursday, a series of sanctions have been imposed on Russia. While Western nations have targeted Russia's banking and financial systems, the sports world too has reacted sharply, banning the Eurasian country from major sports events.
On Monday, the international football body, FIFA, and its European counterpart, UEFA, banned Russian teams from competing in global tournaments, including the men's World Cup in Qatar in November-December and the women's European Championship, scheduled to be held in England in July.
"Following the initial decisions adopted by the FIFA Council and the UEFA Executive Committee, which envisaged the adoption of additional measures, FIFA and UEFA have decided together that all Russian teams, whether national representative teams or club teams, shall be suspended from participation in both FIFA and UEFA competitions until further notice," FIFA and UEFA said in a rare joint press statement.
FIFA and UEFA's move came after both the organisations were heavily criticised for not kicking out Russian teams from their respective tournaments despite widening demands for harsh measures.
While Russia's national team was yet to qualify for football's mega spectacle in the Middle East, they still had a chance to seal their spot in Qatar with a play-off semifinal against Poland due on 24 March.
But the Poles, including their skipper Robert Lewandowski have already declared that they won't play the match against Russia.
After the Polish football association's refusal, more countries came out in their support, with the Czech Republic and Sweden also announcing that they won't play in and against Russia.
With Russia banned, Poland will now automatically make the play-off final where they will clash with the winner of the Czech Republic vs Sweden showdown.
This in a nutshell confirms Russia's expulsion from the biggest stage of football.
Meanwhile, it is almost guaranteed that UEFA will remove Russia from the women's Euros later this summer.
Russia were set to battle the Netherlands, Sweden and Switzerland in group games before a possible blockbuster semifinal against hosts England.
The Portuguese team is expected to take Russia's spot in the tournament, considering they were beaten by them in a play-off last year.
The UEFA Women's Euro 2022 opens with a match between home favourites England and Austria at the famed Old Trafford Stadium in Manchester on 6 July.
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