MOSCOW, January 22. /TASS/. Russia's Deputy Prime Minister on sports, tourism and youth policies Vitaly Mutko called silly the information claiming last September FIFA's Gianni Infantino asked him not to get nominated for head of the Russian Football Union.
On Sunday, the UK’s Daily Mail wrote: "Sources say Infantino called Mutko a few days before the Russian FA presidential election and advised Mutko not to stand." The newspaper said the request was explained by Mutko’s name mentioned in the first part of the report made by the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Independent Commission led by Richard McLaren.
"This is silly," Mutko said. "If he did, I would not run. We have good relations with FIFA, and should recommendations of the kind come from them, we would have minded them."
The WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) Independent Commission carried out an investigation in 2015 in regard to the activities of RUSADA, the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF), the Moscow anti-doping laboratory and the Russian Sports Ministry, and announced the results of its probe on November 9, 2015.
The commission accused certain athletes and sports officials of doping abuse and involvement in other activities related to violations of international regulations on performance enhancing substances. The work of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory and RUSADA was eventually suspended.
Since January 2016, the doping control in Russian sports has been exercised by RUSADA strictly under the supervision of the British anti-doping agency (UKAD).
Russian athletes were under constant scrutiny over the last year due to numerous doping abuse accusations. The WADA Independent Commission, chaired by Canadian sports law Professor Richard McLaren, conducted an investigation into the doping allegations in Russian sports and eventually came up last year with two parts to his report, the first delivered in July and the second in early December. The investigation results, presented on December 9, showed Mutko was not involved in hiding anti-doping violations.