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Football: Andriy Shevchenko elected head of the Ukrainian Football Federation

“This is a very big responsibility.

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Football: Andriy Shevchenko elected head of the Ukrainian Football Federation

“This is a very big responsibility. Very big missions await us. (...) We must ensure that we allow football to develop in Ukraine, in conditions as difficult as a large-scale war,” declared the former 2004 Ballon d'Or during a press conference. Despite the war, “we must prepare our national team, the Olympic team, futsal, women's football,” he urged in kyiv.

According to the UAF, 93 elected officials from the Ukrainian Federation voted Thursday in favor of the 47-year-old former striker, the only candidate in the running, who regularly takes a stand against the Russian invasion. The conflict has had a devastating effect on Ukrainian clubs: some can no longer play in their hometown, which is too dangerous, others have seen their stadium hit by strikes, and players themselves have lost loved ones.

And while Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tirelessly repeats his desire to fight corruption within administrations and other public organizations, Andriy Shevchenko also announced on Thursday that he wanted to put “transparency” at the heart of his presidency. “We are going to launch an internal audit,” he told journalists in kyiv. In a press release on X (formerly Twitter), the UAF specified that Mr. Shevchenko had been elected “for a five-year mandate”.

Andriy Shevchenko is the best-known Ukrainian football player, along with former Dynamo kyiv star Oleg Blokhin, Ballon d'Or in 1975. The best Ukrainian scorer in history, he scored 59 goals in the Champions League, which he won twice (2003 and 2005). He played at Dynamo kyiv, his training club (1994-1999 and 2009-2012), then at AC Milan (1999-2006 and again on loan 2008-2009) and at Chelsea (2006-2008). He has 111 caps (48 goals) before leading the national team between 2016 and 2021.

Ukraine is also still in the race for qualification for Euro-2024 in Germany (June 14-July 14). She will travel to Bosnia-Herzegovina on March 21 for a play-off semi-final before a possible final against the winner of Israel-Iceland.

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