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No drop-off in Russian football’s level of play after one year ban, says head coach

It was noted that the first year under the ban did not show that anything is declining

MOSCOW, June 6. /TASS/. Russian football has been able to maintain its level of play following its international ban, although there was a slight drop-off due to the departure of foreign players, something the clubs were able to overcome by the end of the season, Russian national football team’s Head Coach Valery Karpin told TASS on Tuesday.

"What will happen to Russian football if the ban persists for five more years? I believe that the level of football will not fall," Karpin said in an interview with TASS.

"In my opinion, the first year under the ban did not show that anything is declining. On the contrary, it [Russian football] even started to develop because young players, or those who did not get to play before due to the presence of foreign athletes, were given more playing time. I did not see a big drop in the level."

"We did see a drop in the level, perhaps, because of the departure of foreign players. But I believe that by the end of the season, we made up for that," the Russian national football squad’s head coach added.

The International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) announced on February 28, 2022 that the Russian national team and all professional clubs representing the country were barred from taking part in FIFA tournaments.

The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) made the same decision in regard to the Russian national football team’s participation in UEFA tournaments.

Both FIFA and UEFA cited Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine as being the reason for their decisions.