Andriy Yarmolenko has ended his friendship with Anatoliy Tymoshchuk after the pair argued on the phone over the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Vladimir Putin’s decision to send troops into his neighbour’s territory has resulted in mass outrage around the globe.
The Ukrainian people have had to endure a harrowing period of heartbreak. People have lost their lives, houses and cities have been destroyed, and a large percentage of the population has had to seek refuge in other countries.
Due to the events, the sporting world has had to take note, with strict sanctions placed on Russia. Athletics and Badminton have banned the country’s athletes from competing. While in boxing, all four of the world’s leading governing bodies have refused to sanction fights in the European nation.
In football, the UK government placed sanctions on Roman Abramovich. Furthermore, FIFA has refused to allow players to use Russian teams in their video games.
Sportspeople all over the world have stood up for their beliefs. Fighters like the Klitschko brothers and Vasyl Lomachenko have stayed to defend their country, while Manchester City star Oleksandr Zinchenko hasn’t pulled any punches on his opinion on Putin. And in a recent phone call, neither did Yarmolenko.
Andriy Yarmolenko discusses the argument with Anatoliy Tymoshchuk
Tymoshchuk held the record for the most caps in Ukrainian history. The midfielder made a whopping 144 appearances for his country. But that record no longer stands. The Ukraine FA stripped him of it after deciding to stay in Russia to continue his assistant coach role at Zenit Saint Petersburg. His decision left Yarmolenko furious.
The West Ham star, who previously looked up to his countryman, has emerged as a legend for his country in his own right. However, he hasn’t let that get in the way of him telling the 43-year-old precisely what he thinks. The player revealed all the details of their explosive phone call.
Yarmolenko told Zorya Londonsk:
“I asked him, ‘How do you sleep at night?’ He replied, ‘I don’t sleep.’
“Then he called me. I told him, ‘You used to be a role model for me; now, you’re nothing.’ Then he told me to f*** off, and I told him the same, and that’s that.”
Despite his appreciation of Tymoshchuk’s ability on the pitch, Yamolenko’s loyalty to his country takes priority.
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