UEFA and Formula One pull out of Russia

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine this week has had significant consequences when it comes to international sport.  On Friday according to Jack Bantock and Homero de la Fuente of CNN, the United European Football Association has moved the 2022 Champions League Final on May 28 from Krestovsky Stadium in St. Petersburg, Russia to Stade de France in Paris. Meanwhile, according to Abhishek Takle of Reuters on Friday, Formula One announced it will not race in Sochi this season due to the invasion, even though the race would not be until September 25.

This was to be only the second UEFA Champions League Final in Russia. The first was at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow in 2008 as Manchester United beat Chelsea 6-5 in an all English Premier League final on penalty kicks after going to penalty kicks tied at one goal apiece.

Stade de France has hosted the Champions League Final on two previous occasions. In 2000, in an all La Liga final, Real Madrid beat Valencia 3-0. Then in 2006, FC Barcelona beat Arsenal 2-1.

So far in 2021-22 UEFA Champions League action, the first leg of the round of 16 has been completed. So far Manchester City leads Sporting Lisbon 5-0, Paris St-Germain leads Real Madrid 1-0, Bayern Munich and Red Bull Salzburg are tied 1-1, Portugal’s Benfica and the Netherlands’s Ajax are tied 2-2, Chelsea leads Lille 2-0, Liverpool leads Inter Milan 2-0, Manchester United and Atletico Madrid are tied 1-1, and Juventus and Villarreal are tied 1-1. The second leg of the round of 16 will take place between March 8 and March 16.

The 2022 Formula One World Championship will start with the Bahrain Grand Prix on March 20. There are a total of 22 Formula One races scheduled this year. The Russian Grand Prix is the only race cancelled from the schedule and there are no plans to move the race to another country. Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain is the defending champion.