date of publication:
Jun 09 2021 17:10 GMT
Update date: Jun 09 2021 18:25 GMT
Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014. Moscow considers Crimea part of its territory but is internationally recognized as part of Ukraine.
Russian officials see the shirt as a provocation, while Ukraine says it symbolizes national unity.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky published a personal photo of him on his account on the “Instagram” application, with the new shirt that the players will wear in the upcoming European Championship.
Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matitsyn was quoted by the TASS news agency as saying: “The Russian Football Association submitted a petition to UEFA asking for explanations in this regard, and we expressed our concern about the Ukrainian national team shirt.”
The front of the yellow shirt shows the borders of Ukraine in white, and the slogan: “Glory to Ukraine!” is written on the back of the shirt, and the inside of the shirt bears the slogan: “Glory to the heroes.”
These phrases are used in Ukraine as an official military salute.
Ukraine coach Andriy Shevchenko, a former Chelsea and AC Milan player, told reporters this week that he did not care about Russia’s reaction.
“I’m interested in our reaction, and I think our fans like our shirt, so I’m happy,” he said.
Relations between Moscow and Kiev deteriorated after the annexation of Crimea and the start of a Russian-backed insurgency in eastern Ukraine in 2014.
Ukraine will play its first match in the European Championship 2020 against the Netherlands, next Sunday, in Amsterdam, and it will also face Austria and North Macedonia, in Group C.
Russia will play Belgium, the world’s number one, in St. Petersburg, next Saturday, and then meet Denmark and Finland, in the second group.