Schalke removes Gazprom sponsorship from shirts

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The 2.Bundesliga club is sponsored by the Russian energy company, which is majority state-owned and the country's largest company in terms of revenue.

Schalke's move comes after Russia's attack on neighbouring Ukraine attracted widespread international condemnation.

The Gelsenkirchen-based team has not confirmed if it has severed its financial relationship with the company.

"Following recent developments, FC Schalke 04 have decided to remove the logo of main sponsor GAZPROM from the club's shirts," the club said in a statement.

"It will be replaced by lettering reading 'Schalke 04' instead. The association will inform you about further possible steps in due course."

Schalke's actions come amid mounting expectation that Russia will be stripped of hosting the 2021-2022 UEFA Champions League final in May.

The competition's showpiece fixture is set to be played in St Petersburg, coincidentally at the Gazprom Arena.

However, Stats Perform understands European football's governing body, UEFA, will announce a change of venue after an emergency executive committee meeting on Friday.

Elsewhere, this year's Formula One Russian Grand Prix appears to be under threat, while serious doubts hang over next month's Qatar 2022 World Cup qualifying play-offs, in which both Russia and Ukraine are set to take part.


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