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Official calls for reducing number of foreign players in Russian Premier League

December 24, 2014, 16:46 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Two or three good foreign footballers are enough for a team, Alexander Zhukov, the President of the National Olympic Committee believes
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Alexander Zhukov, the President of the National Olympic Committee

Alexander Zhukov, the President of the National Olympic Committee

© Sergei Fadeichev/TASS

MOSCOW, December 24. /TASS/. It is important to cut down the number of foreign players in Russia’s Premier League to two or three per football club, Alexander Zhukov, the President of the National Olympic Committee told reporter on Wednesday.

“If two or three really good foreign footballers play in a team, that’s quite enough,” he said.

On December 16, the executive board of the Russian Football Union (RFU) endorsed a new formula for setting a limit to the number of mercenaries at football clubs.

An application a club files for a season can include ten foreigners and fifteen Russians. The new rule will take effect in the season of 2015/2016.

Russian Minister of Sports Vitaly Mutko said he did not agree with the newly endorsed limitation.

“The ministry doesn’t agree with the law on foreign players in the form that has been endorsed,” he said. “We’ll take the line of putting limits on requested numbers (of foreign players) but with certain exceptions.”

“We must uphold the interests of the national team, weather some people like it or not,” Mutko said. “We’ll take that line but will make a few additions to it.”

He said exceptions might be made for one or two games upon request, for instance but we won’t espouse the principle of freedom — something that certain clubs would like us to do,” he said.

The formula in effect now is 7 + 4. It means that no more than seven foreign players can play for a team in a single game.

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