Argentina Footballers Refuse to Play in 'Dangerous' Ukraine

Fearing for their lives in war-torn Ukraine, three Argentina players have refused to play for clubs there.

Updated: July 22, 2014 16:59 IST
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Fighting between pro-Russia rebels and government forces has ravaged Ukraine .


Kiev: Three Argentinian players of top flight side Metalist Kharkiv have refused to return to their Ukrainian club because of the ongoing conflict in the country, local media reported Tuesday.

Metalist skipper Jose Sosa, Alejandro Gomez and Jonathan Cristaldo have said they will stay in Argentina until the situation in Ukraine returns to normal or their contracts would be cancelled. (Also read: International footballers flee Ukraine)

"It's unreasonable to stay in a country where we don't feel safe any more," Gomez was quoted as saying by the information site.

"Nobody can provide us with any security in Ukraine."

Last week another Argentinian midfielder Sebastian Blanco refused to return to Metalist Kharkiv, a club in the eastern Ukraine, from a training camp in Austria.

"After the Malaysian plane crash I have no intention of returning to Ukraine," the 26-year-old said.

"The situation there is currently abnormal. I decided to stay in Buenos Aires."

Meanwhile, Ukrainian champions Shakhtar Donetsk have also lost six of their foreign players, who have refused to return after the Malaysia Airlines crash.

The six have been named as Brazilians Fred, Alex Teixeira, Douglas Costa, Dentinho, Ismaily and Argentine Facundo Ferreyra.

They refused to board a flight back to Ukraine after their side's 4-1 friendly loss to Lyon in the French town of Annecy on Saturday.

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