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The entire Russia squad to the 2014 World Cup is being examined by FIFA for suspected doping.
World football’s governing body has confirmed that an investigation is ongoing.
The Russian team that lost in the group stages in Brazil three years ago are among at least 34 Russian footballers in the list of over 1,000 athletes listed as “people of interest” in reports commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency, WADA, on state-sponsored interference in 30 sports.
FIFA spokesperson told the Mail, “FIFA is still investigating the allegations made against [Russian] football players.”
Russia is currently hosting the FIFA Confederations Cup in preparation to host the next World Cup in 2018.
Five of the players from the 2014 squad including Igor Akinfeev, Denis Glushakov, Maksim Kanunnikov, Aleksandr Samedov and Yuri Zhirkov are in the current team eliminated on Saturday following a loss to Mexico.
Former WADA chief Dick Pound said, “There is a huge onus on FIFA to reach a sensible conclusion on these matters before the World Cup takes place.
“It is incumbent on them to say what steps they are taking, what they find, and take whatever action necessary to protect the integrity of sport.
“Even within a governing body with as little credibility remaining as FIFA, if you were a senior official you wouldn’t want to be part of a body that ignores this.
“There has been an institutional denial of doping in football for years … I’ve seen too many presentations by FIFA, straight out of fantasy land, about how they don’t have a problem. They absolutely have to take this case seriously.”