Russian and Ukrainian soccer clubs cancel match due to political tensions
Ukrainian soccer supporters create Ukraine's Navy flag to support the country's territorial integrity, during a soccer match between Dynamo Kyiv and Crimean Tavria at the Olympic stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, Sunday, March 16, 2014. A soccer match between a Ukrainian and Russian club scheduled for July has been cancelled due to political tensions. (AP / Efrem Lukatsky)
The Associated Press
Published Friday, April 4, 2014 11:56AM EDT
MOSCOW -- A football friendly between Spartak Moscow and Dynamo Kyiv has been called off because of the political tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
Spartak Moscow said on its official website Friday that the game, which was scheduled for July 24 to inaugurate the opening of the Russian team's new stadium, has been cancelled.
Spartak says it was a "joint decision" prompted by "force-majeure circumstances."
Dynamo Kyiv's president was earlier quoted as saying it would be inappropriate to play Spartak at this moment.
The two countries have been at loggerheads since February when months-long opposition rallies culminated in the Ukrainian president leaving the country and a new government stepping in. Russia has since annexed Ukraine's Crimean peninsula.
Spartak now has to find another team for the inaugural game.