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FIFPro is very concerned about the safety of players from Dynamo Moscow. The worldwide professional footballers association urges the Russian FA to take all necessary measures to guarantee the safety of every player in Russia.

FC Dynamo Moscow is having a difficult start to the new season, the worst ever in club history with 8 defeats in their first 11 matches. After Saturday’s 2-1 away win at FC Mordovia Saransk, the club is ranked 12th in the 16-team Russia Premier League.

Some so-called fans of Dynamo Moscow apparently cannot cope with these results. On Sunday 23 September some disgruntled fans threatened the players on the training pitch. They warned the players that if the poor results would continue, the fans would turn their deeds into (physical) action.There is even a video of the ‘meeting’.

Last Friday, October 19th, following a training session of Dynamo at their training base in Novogorsk (near Moscow), unidentified persons in camouflage clothes used paintball guns to shoot at players and coaches. Several players were hit in the head. The gunmen escaped. The hooligans also distributed flyers addressed to Kevin Kuranyi ((Germany), Balazs Dzsudzsak (Hungary) and Christian Noboa (Ecuador). These players were ordered to be more active during training sessions and official matches. 

‘Words fail me’, player Alan Gatagov said to R-Sport. ‘What should we do? Should each of us hire a personal bodyguard? I was hit in the back of the head when they shot at us, lots of players were hit. I didn't even realize what they were shooting with, perhaps paintballs. They were in camouflage and fled pretty quickly. It was vile. Fans should support us, not do this type of thing.’

According to media reports, the police is investigating the incident.

The Russian professional footballers association and FIFPro are disgusted with these new acts of violence against players in Russia. FIFPro demands that the Russian FA takes the necessary measures to prevent incidents like these from happening to all professional footballers in Russia.

‘Supporters shooting at their own players… This is beyond imagination’, reacts Theo van Seggelen, secretary general of FIFPro. ‘I think we might be lucky that none of the players suffered a severe injury, or even worse.’

‘Unfortunately, this is not the first time that footballers in Russia are victims of so-called fans behaving violently. These are not fans, these are thugs. These people do not belong in a stadium, and do not belong on or near a training ground.’

‘This is another warning that the Russian FA and the national authorities need to step up their efforts in order to protect all professional footballers from hooligans. In 2018, Russia is to host the FIFA World Cup. But I cannot imagine many players looking forward to going to this tournament, knowing that their safety is all but guaranteed.’

 

 

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