World Cup 2022 LIVE: Southgate to STAY as England boss FA claims Benzema’s Instagram SNUB, Neville defends Ronaldo

Ukraine ‘peace plea’ blocked

Fifa has blocked Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy from delivering a message on the World Cup final – as President Gianni Infantino said the pitch should never be a place for protests, writes MARTIN LIPTON.

Zelensky wanted to “send a message of world peace” to fans at Lusail’s legendary stadium via video link.

But the approach was dismissed by a source in Ukraine’s government, who complained: “We thought Fifa wanted to use their platform for the greater good.”

The decision came shortly after Infantino lined up his side for the first time publicly in the line of One Love bracelets with England, Wales and six other European teams.

Infantino claimed: “I honestly believe that we defend values, human rights and everyone’s rights.

“Everyone is free to express their views, opinions and beliefs, but on the pitch, the pitch, we must respect football and these regulations protect 211 football teams and their fans.

“The fans who come to the stadium and the billions who watch the World Cup on TV, each of them has their own problems.

“They just want to go 90, 100, 105, maybe 120 minutes plus penalties without having to think about anything else to enjoy a little moment of joy and emotion.

“We just have to give these people a moment in their lives where they can forget their own problems and enjoy football.”

https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6619134/world-cup-2022-live-southgate-england-benzema-neville-ronaldo/ World Cup 2022 LIVE: Southgate to STAY as England boss FA claims Benzema’s Instagram SNUB, Neville defends Ronaldo

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