For ethical reasons: Finland is risk-free in Qatar

Qatar, host of the 2022 World Cup, is controversial due to the human rights situations there. However, the principality, with its advanced training facilities, attracts many sports teams year after year, despite all the criticism, including FC Bayern Munich. The Finn did not make the trip to the desert – for ethical reasons.

Rico Resky: Qatar? Without me!

The Finnish national team wants to prepare for the qualifiers for the upcoming European Championships in Qatar, but will have to do without Rikko Riski. The attacker refused to participate. “The reasons behind my decision were of an ethical nature,” the 29-year-old from HJK Helsinki justified his decision, according to Finnish broadcaster Yle of the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper. The deciding factor was his “I want to stick to” values.

Accordingly, Risky discussed the matter with national coach Marco Canerva and captain Lennart and Angel and received an understanding, but the two had different views. Kanerva respects the player’s position, but also noted the importance of the training camp for the upcoming European Championship qualifiers. The coach said that Risky (28 caps and four goals) does not have to fear the end of his international career, as he “will miss, but he will not be excluded from the team.”

In November, it became known that the Finns were on their way to a training camp in Qatar, which caused some fierce criticism in the northern European country. “It’s good that attention is being drawn to the issue and that people are wondering what we can do in the future,” Team Finland captain Tim Sparf told SPT news agency. According to the midfielder, Qatar has to improve some things in terms of human rights, but he also indicated that he is “not well informed” in this regard.

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Unlike Riski, former SpVgg player Greuther Fürth (28 second division games in the 2013/14) season did not want to draw any personal consequences. “If I was nominated for a training camp, it would never cross my mind to say no to the national team,” the 31-year-old said.

Finland is in Group J of the Euro 2020 qualifiers and will meet Italy, Greece, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Armenia and Liechtenstein.

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