Graeme Souness believes that FIFA should allow Ukraine to book a place in this year’s World Cup in Qatar, in order to send a message to the Russian government.
Souness’s beloved Scotland hosted Ukraine on Wednesday in a World Cup qualifier suspended since March following an attack on Russia.
The attack was criticized worldwide but fighting has continued since then, with millions of Ukrainians displaced and thousands left to defend their country.
Although the winner of Wednesday’s match in Glasgow against Wales on Sunday to determine the final European team to reach Qatar, Souness strongly believes that no matter what the outcome, FIFA must ensure Ukraine enters the tournament.
“It’s the strangest feeling I ever had in a football game. I’m from Scotland, I was the captain of the team, every game we play I want to win with enthusiasm,” Souness told Sky Sports before the game. Hampden Park.
“Every game played by our rugby team I want us to win very quickly. I have mixed feelings tonight. What is happening in Ukraine right now is beyond football.
“It’s about death and death, we see images that I have never seen in my life, only four hours to fly from where we stand, not across the world, which can visit us one day.
“So we have to stand up and support Ukraine, we have to go back to them as best we can. Football plays a big role in the lives of many people today.
“For me, what FIFA should do, FIFA should say no matter what happens [in the play-offs], this team should go to the World Cup.
“Make a team of five somewhere. Ukraine should go to the World Cup. Just keep the name of Ukraine at the forefront of everyone’s mind.”
Souness emphasizes that allowing Ukraine to compete in Qatar will help prove to Russian leaders – UEFA and FIFA, who have both blocked their competitions – that they are the only ones in the world due to their attacks.
“We will be protected from the images we see, because they happen every day,” he continued. “Often, we see shocking news that I never thought I would see in my life.
“We have to make sure that the people of the Kremlin understand that the world does not accept what they are doing, and that football has a role to play because football has it.
“This team has to go to the World Cup to keep the name of Ukraine in front of everyone so that the Russian people can see that they stand alone and are wrong, they have to accept that.”
Anyone who leaves the play-off has been cheated on by England, Iran and the United States.