Arsenal midfielder Oleksandr Zinchenko has called for Russians and Belarusians to be banned from sporting competitions following the devastating invasion of Ukraine in an exclusive interview with Piers Morgan.
In an exclusive interview with English broadcaster Piers Morgan on his Uncensored Talk show yesterday, June 14, the Ukrainian footballer expressed his anger for the Russian and Belarusian athletes and wished they don’t reach the highest level in any sporting activity.
This follows the lifting of the ban on Russian and Belarusian athletes by Wimbledon, allowing them to participate as neutral athletes in the Grand Slam scheduled for July.
“I don’t agree. I am one of the Ukrainians which don’t like to see them on the highest level in any sport. How many bombs and rockets have been set from Belarus. I am not political; I didn’t understand anything about it I don’t understand and I won’t it is no political it is war.” He said.
He stated he wouldn’t shake hands with any Russian or Belarusian in any match because they didn’t react to the invasions; hence, he doesn’t expect them to call Ukrainians brothers.
“There is no chance that I will shake hands with a Russian anymore. I have to be honest, I will never accept their reaction. You can tell yourself that they are not doing anything against us, or something like that. But yes, they are accomplices. How? Because they don’t react. If nobody wants to talk because they are afraid, then I’m sorry. Sorry. Don’t ever call us brothers again like you did in the past. Never again.” He stated
He expressed how emotionally drained he was by the continuous shelling of his home by Russia and declared that Ukrainians are not going to give up the lands Russians want to claim because they profess they are theirs. He further stated that he had wonderful memories in Donetsk and did not want to ever hear Russian President Vladimir Putin’s name.
“Now I have no emotions inside. I am completely empty I am a sensitive person and seeing all these scary things I think I left it all. It is hard for the people at the forefront.knowing that how many people have already been killed, and how many buildings have been destroyed. And why we should give them. You reckon you lost someone from your circle and one day you are gonna give them the land. And you sit and well I lost one for my cycle for the reason because we were fighting for that and now you gave them like this.. just your reaction” He remarked.
A game dubbed “Game4Ukraine” will be played at Stamford Bridge on August 5th, which stems from the United24 initiative, to raise funds for the reconstruction of the Mykhailo-Kotsiubynsky Lyceum in Chernihiv Oblast, a school struck by missiles. The sale of tickets, merchandise, and sponsorship will be channeled to rebuild the school.
Wimbledon lifted the ban on Russian and Belarusian athletes and would allow them to compete as neutral athletes on the condition of not expressing their support for the invasion and not receiving sponsorship from any Russian company. This is one of the policies to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and England is supporting Kyiv even through its sports.