India’s Friendly With Belarus on Track ‘As of Now’, Says Igor Stimac

AFC U-23 Asian Cup Qualifiers: 'Stay Humble and Dream Big', Coach Igor Stimac's Mantra Ahead of Big UAE Game

Indian football team coach Igor Stimac (AIFF)

Though FIFA has suspended participation of all Russian clubs and national teams from its competitions, it has not pronounced any restrictions against Belarus. However, many countries are reluctant to play against them too considering their support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

  • IANS
  • Last Updated:March 14, 2022, 19:50 IST
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Despite the International Olympic Committee (IOC) asking organisations to discourage participation of Belarus teams for the country’s support to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, India is going ahead with their international football friendly with Belarus later this month.

Though some All-India Football Federation (AIFF) officials saying that they are in regular contact with the International football federation (FIFA) to explore the possibility of avoiding the match, head coach Igor Stimac on Monday said “as of now” the match was on and they are preparing for it.

The Indian men’s football team is scheduled to play international friendlies against hosts Bahrain and Belarus in Manama on March 23 and 26 as part of their buildup for the AFC Asian Cup 2023 Qualifiers in Kolkata in June.

“We have been in constant touch with FIFA over this match. As of now, it is on and we are preparing for it,” said Stimac in a virtual press conference.

Though FIFA has suspended participation of all Russian clubs and national teams from its competitions, it has not pronounced any restrictions against Belarus. However, many countries are reluctant to play against them too considering their support for the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) had decided not to allow the participation of Belarus along with Russia in the Beijing 2022 Winter Paralympic Games.

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