Accessibility links

Breaking News

FIFA President 'Concerned' About Russian Soccer Racism

The official logo of the 2018 World Cup is projected on the facade of the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow in October.

The head of world soccer's governing body, FIFA President Sepp Blatter, has said he is concerned about a recent study that highlights the scale of racism in Russia ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Blatter said if racist behavior by Russian soccer fans "does not stop, then there must be some sanctions."

Blatter confirmed that he had received a report detailing dozens of cases of discriminatory behavior linked to Russian soccer fans during the last two years.

He told The Associated Press: "Sure, we are concerned. Definitely."

The study was conducted by the Fare network organization and the Moscow-based SOVA Center.

In 2014, Blatter spoke to Russian President Vladimir Putin about the need to crack down on racism before Russia hosts the World Cup in 2018.

Based on reporting by AP