"While we are not DPRK yet": former Zenit footballer commented on the Russian national team matches
Former Zenit St. Petersburg football player Alexander Kanishchev compared Russia to North Korea, advocating for friendly matches between the national team and any opponents. The representative of the aggressor country, who played for Metalist Kharkiv for one season, called the sparring matches of Valery Karpin's team useful.
Kanishchev said this in an interview with the RB Sport portal. Commenting on the possible decision of the International Football Federation (FIFA) to allow Russia to participate in the qualifying tournament for the 2026 World Cup, he suggested that this was unlikely to happen, feeling disappointed.
"The point is that the national team has to exist. How can you exist if you only train? While we are not DPRK yet, strive to get there, and are not isolated completely, we have to play with those who agree to become our rivals. Admission to the 2026 World Cup qualifiers? Everything can be solved. There is a question of price. Anything can happen. But if you look back at today's politics, it's unlikely to happen. It is impossible to allow Russia to participate in such a tournament without the consent of other federations," Kanishchev said.
As a reminder, it became known that the Russian national football team found a "top opponent" for sparring in October. In addition, the Russian team was challenged by one of the worst teams in Africa.
As OBOZREVATEL previously reported, UEFA President Alexander Čeferin said that Russian teams will not return to international football tournaments until the occupiers leave the territory of Ukraine.