Qatar 2022: Poland in the play-off final, to the chagrin of Sweden

 Following the decision of February 28" suspending Russian teams from all Fifa and UEFA competitions, Poland will face directly the winner of the Sweden-Czech Republic confrontation on March 29, indicates the world body. Fifa chooses in passing to ignore the appeal filed a few hours earlier by the Russian Federation before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), asking in particular for the suspension of the sanction and therefore the reinstatement of Sbornaïa in the race for the Qatari World Cup.

By ruling out the scenario of a three-way tournament between Poland, Sweden and the Czech Republic, or the repechage of another selection for the play-offs, the body also favors the Poles, a choice immediately denounced by the Swedish Football Federation. "The most reasonable and sportingly fair thing would have been for Poland to have a new opponent in the semi-finals," said federation president Hakan Sjöstrand. "We understand that this is a difficult puzzle for Fifa to solve, but nevertheless the principle of playing under the same conditions, that is to say playing and winning two competitive matches to reach the final phase of the World Cup, should apply," he said. The Swedish coach, Janne Andersson, also denounced a decision "completely insane from a sporting point of view", even if he welcomed the exclusion of Russia because of the invasion of Ukraine. "Having said that, we are fully focused on preparing for the match against the Czech Republic. We want to go to the World Cup and will do everything to get there," he added.

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