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Rayo fan pressure wins out: Betis confirm Roman Zozulya return

Betis sporting director Miguel Torrecilla confirms that the Ukraine striker will not join Rayo on loan after a supporter backlash against the deal.

Zozulya y Torrecilla, juntos este verano.

Real Betis sporting director Miguel Torrecilla has confirmed that Ukraine striker Roman Zozulya has returned to the club after a backlash from fans of Rayo Vallecano against the decision to sign the player on loan.

"Problems with radical groups"

“People come before everything else and so we will look after Zozulya, we want him to be calm. He will come back to Seville for now and we’ll have a look at what our legal team can do,” Torrecilla said on Wednesday. “We were informed that he was having problems with radical groups. We have spoken to Rayo and we agreed that for the benefit of our player, who is an asset, he should return to Seville.”

Zozulya unable to play again this season

Zozulya finds himself in limbo as he cannot now play for Betis for the remainder of the season and can’t move to another club as he was registered at Dnipro at the beginning of the 2016-17 campaign.

“The player has been saddened by this because he did not expect it,” Torrecilla added.

Rayo protests

Rayo supporters groups had staged various protests against the signing of Zozulya before, during and after his first training session with the club. Fans brandished banners alluding to the striker’s alleged neo-Nazi ideology and confronted him and his agent at the club’s offices in Madrid. Zozulya denied he has any far-right sympathies or links to paramilitary groups in Ukraine in an open letter to Rayo fans when he signed for the club.


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