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Putin criticises Russia national team

Russia
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Spartak Moscow sign Russia midfielder Alexander Samedov

Alexander Samedov has returned to his boyhood club, Lokomotiv Moscow.

Russian league leader Spartak Moscow have signed midfielder Alexander Samedov from Lokomotiv Moscow.

The 32-year-old Samedov started his career with Spartak and played for them until 2005. He says he feels "huge nerves but at the same time happiness to return to my first club after 12 years."

Samedov rejoins a team who are five points clear of Zenit St. Petersburg at the top of the standings. Under Italian coach Massimo Carrera, Spartak are chasing their first title since 2001.

The right-sided midfielder...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Call for Russia to be stripped of World Cup over state-sponsored doping

FIFA president Gianni Infantino expects Russia to stage a successful 2018 World Cup.

Anti-doping organisations have said Russia should be banned from hosting and competing in international sporting events, including the 2018 World Cup, until it can show it is compliant with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code.

The demand comes after the recently-released McLaren report showed the country had run a state-sponsored doping programme affecting more than 1,000 athletes between 2011 and 2015.

After a summit of anti-doping organisations in Dublin on Tuesday, leaders said Russia should...

Work on World Cup 2018 semifinal venue Zenit Arena completed

Zenit Arena will be a venue for the FIFA World Cup 2018.
Zenit Arena, a 68,134 all-seater stadium, will be opened in 2017.

A Russian stadium that is due to host a 2018 World Cup semifinal match has been officially completed after many construction delays and corruption scandals.

The St. Petersburg stadium, provisionally called the Zenit Arena, has taken almost a decade to build, prompting Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to publicly call it "disgraceful."

St. Petersburg Governor Georgy Poltavchenko told reporters at the arena on Thursday that it has been officially commissioned for use in the World Cup. His deputy, Igor...

Gianni Infantino on Russia doping allegations: 'This is a FIFA matter'

FIFA president Gianni Infantino expects Russia to stage a successful 2018 World Cup.

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- Russia will face any "necessary actions and sanctions'' after investigators alleged that football players had suspicious drug-test samples covered up as part of a wider doping scandal in the 2018 World Cup host nation, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said Wednesday.

Five suspicious samples in the Russian men's under-17 and under-21 national teams in 2013 and 2014 were exposed in emails released earlier this month by the World Anti-Doping Agency, accompanying investigator...

 By PA Sport

Russian deputy PM Vitaly Mutko among FIFA council candidates

Vitaly Mutko, Russian Sports Minister
Vitaly Mutko has sat at FIFA's top table since 2009.

Russian deputy prime minister Vitaly Mutko is among five declared candidates for five European vacancies on the FIFA Council but must pass an eligibility check ahead of April's election.

Mutko, who has sat at FIFA's top table since 2009, has submitted an eligibility questionnaire -- but questions surround his candidacy following a World Anti-Doping Agency investigation into state-sponsored doping in Russia.

The 58-year-old was Russian sports minister until October, and the ministry stands...