The Sky Network reported that the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) is mulling over the possibility of lifting Russia’s comprehensive ban on participating in international tournaments, reported Al-Rai Daily.
This comes after the European Union (UEFA) showed signs of softening its stance towards Russia last week. According to the report, FIFA may issue a decision on the matter during its council meeting today, which could permit Russia’s national team to take part in the Under-17 World Cup if it qualifies for the tournament.
However, the item did not appear on the meeting’s agenda. The International Federation is yet to respond to a Reuters request for comment. Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, UEFA had disqualified all Russian teams, including national and club level teams, from participating in continental competitions.
Nevertheless, following its executive committee meeting in Limassol, Cyprus, on the 27th of April, the EU stated that “Children should not be punished for actions that are exclusively the responsibility of adults.”
It added that the Russian under-17 team can take part in European Union competitions during this season. The Ukrainian Football Association has called on UEFA to reconsider its decision, emphasizing that it would refuse to participate in tournaments in which Russian teams take part. It remains to be seen whether FIFA will follow UEFA’s example and begin to allow Russia back into the international fold.