Has Russia been banned from the 2022 FIFA World Cup?
Russia have had to forfeit their World Cup playoff semi-final against Poland following a hearing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
A request from Russia to freeze the ban on its football teams in FIFA competitions has been turned down by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
CAS made a similar announcement on Tuesday regarding UEFA competitions, and this latest decision all but confirms that Russia will not be a part of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, with their qualifying play-off semi-final due to be played next Thursday.
Russia had been scheduled to face Poland, but FIFA instead handed their opponents a bye to the final of their play-off route.
Poland will now play either Sweden or the Czech Republic – with that semi-final on March 24 still set to go ahead – for a place at Qatar 2022.
Poland, Sweden and the Czech Republic each announced they would refuse to play Russia due to the ongoing war in Ukraine.
The Russian Football Union lodged an appeal to CAS after its clubs and national team were banned from all FIFA and UEFA competitions "until further notice".
The joint-decision taken by FIFA and UEFA followed Russia's invasion of Ukraine three weeks ago.
Russia "categorically disagreed" with the ban and submitted its appeal, while also seeking an initial stay of execution.
However, CAS confirmed on Friday that it has rejected that request, confirming that "the Challenged Decision remains in force" during proceedings.
CAS statement on Russia World Cup ban
A media release from CAS read: "The President of the Appeals Arbitration Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport has rejected the request filed by the Football Union of Russia (FUR) to stay, for the duration of the CAS proceedings, the execution of the FIFA Council's decision to suspend all Russian teams and clubs from participation in its competitions until further notice (the Challenged decision).
"Accordingly, the Challenged Decision remains in force and all Russian teams and clubs continue to be suspended from participation in FIFA competitions. The CAS arbitration proceedings continue. A Panel of arbitrators is currently being constituted and the parties are exchanging written submissions. No hearing has been fixed yet."