FIFA rejects calls to strip Russia of World Cup

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 25, 2014 at 11:44 am •  Published: July 25, 2014
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Blatter already rejected calls to strip Russia of the tournament after it annexed the Crimea this year.

"The World Cup has been given and voted to Russia and we are going forward with our work," Blatter said in March.

In a separate statement Friday, Mutko said a U.S.-led boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympics had been a mistake.

"So there's no sense in reacting to politicians trying to make names for themselves," Mutko was quoted saying by the Russian news agency R-Sport. "We're preparing in a calm way, building facilities, getting ready for the World Cup."

Russia has announced a $20 billion budget for building and renovating 12 stadiums, and other construction projects, for the first World Cup in Eastern Europe.

Restricting Russian financial institutions' access to European capital markets was suggested to a meeting of EU ambassadors in Brussels on Friday. The 28-nation bloc is scheduled to further discuss the subject Tuesday.

"FIFA has stated many times that sport should be outside politics," Mutko said. "Hosting an event like this, we're doing it for athletes from all over the world, for footballers, for the fans."