Russia-Ukraine Crisis: UEFA moves Champions League final from Saint Petersburg in Russia to Paris

UEFA has moved this season’s Champions League final from Saint Petersburg in Russia to Paris in France.

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin chaired an extraordinary meeting of the Executive Committee on Friday where it was decided to move the showpiece event away from Saint Petersburg following the military attack on Ukraine led by Russian president Vladimir Putin...

The final will instead move to the Stade de France in Paris, as first reported by the New York Times. The French capital last hosted the European Cup final in 2006, when Barcelona defeated Arsenal 2-1.

UEFA said in a statement: 

“The UEFA executive committee decided to relocate the final of the 2021-22 UEFA Men's Champions League from St Petersburg to Stade de France in St Denis.

“The game will be played as initially scheduled on Saturday, May 28 at 2100 CET.

“UEFA wishes to express its thanks and appreciation to French Republic president Emmanuel Macron for his personal support and commitment to have European club football’s most prestigious game moved to France at a time of unparalleled crisis.”
UEFA also decided that it would relocate any games in tournaments it controls that were to be played in Russia and Ukraine, whether involving clubs or national teams, until further notice. At the moment, that affects only a single club match: Spartak Moscow’s next home game in the second-tier Europa League — they have been drawn against RB Leipzig.

UEFA had come under considerable pressure to move the final away from Saint Petersburg, with European lawmakers on Thursday asking the governing body to move the final and to stop considering Russian cities for international football events.

The group of politicians also called on UEFA to sever ties with Russian state energy company Gazprom, which sponsors the Champions League.

A letter sent to UEFA from a group of politicians in the European parliament said: “We call on you to stop considering Saint Petersburg and other Russian cities as venues for international football competitions and to choose as a first and very urgent step an alternative venue for the Champions League final on May 28, 2022.
“In addition, we appeal to you to convene a special meeting of the UEFA Executive Committee, to terminate cooperation with Gazprom as UEFA sponsor and to consider sanctions against individual Russian officials who are complicit in the violation of international law.”