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Russian football chief to discuss with sports minister next week foreign players’ quota

Last June, the RFU Executive Committee voted at its session in Moscow in favor of the ‘8+17’ formula in regard to a number of foreign players allowed to play in the Russian football champ beginning with the 2020/2021 season
President of the Russian Football Union (RFU) Alexander Dyukov  Gavriil Grigorov/TASS
President of the Russian Football Union (RFU) Alexander Dyukov
© Gavriil Grigorov/TASS

MOSCOW, February 13. /TASS/. President of the Russian Football Union (RFU) Alexander Dyukov said he planned to meet next week with Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin to discuss an issue of a limit on a number of foreign footballers allowed to play for the clubs of the Russian Premier League (RPL).

Last June, the RFU Executive Committee voted at its session in Moscow in favor of the ‘8+17’ formula in regard to a number of foreign players allowed to play in the Russian football championship beginning with the 2020/2021 season.

"The limit is set not by us, but by the Sports Ministry," Dyukov told journalists. "We have a new sports minister, I am meeting with him next week and will certainly discuss this issue."

"The previous sports minister [Pavel Kolobkov] has voiced his support for the current limit structure and believed it to be absolutely correct," he continued.

"I believe that it is wrong constantly changing something," the RFU president stated. "I want to understand what Matytsin thinks of such mechanism as a limit [on foreign players]. This is what I will discuss with him."

Dyukov added that at the meeting with Sports Minister Matytsin he would be discussing the issue of the foreign footballers quota in general and not a possible cancellation of the limit.

The Russian Premier League is currently exploiting the ‘6+5’ quota, which means that not more than six foreign players, who are also referred to as ‘legionnaires,’ can be simultaneously playing for one club on the field during the match time.

The ‘8+17’ formula means that each RPL club can include not more than eight foreign players in the extended roster before the season. The new regulation also means that instead of a limit on the legionnaires’ number playing on the field at the same time, the figure must be stipulated by a roster application from each football club prior to the season.

In July 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a bill into law regulating the number of foreign athletes allowed to participate in sports competitions in Russia.