23 February 2024 - 3:16 PM


IMAGO | Dynamo Kyiv against FC Obolon Kyiv in the Ukrainian Premier League.

Two years on: How the business of Ukrainian football survived Russia’s invasion

  • Since Russia’s invasion two years ago Ukraine’s football clubs have shown resilience and adapted business models to survive in a war-stricken country.
  • With matchday revenues destroyed by the war and having lost millions in transfer fees after FIFA suspended player contracts, clubs have cut costs, been helped by munificent owners and UEFA funds to survive.
  • Why it matters: Football is a footnote amidst Europe’s biggest armed conflict since World War Two. But the resilience of clubs has offered a glimmer of hope and normalcy in extraordinary times.
  • The perspective: Twelve professional footballers are among the 350 Ukrainian athletes killed since the outbreak of war. However, in these dark times, one significant change in the league could become a lucrative opportunity in the long run.

Exactly two years ago, on 24 February 2022, Russia initiated a large-scale military invasion of Ukraine, marking a significant escalation in the conflict between the two nations that has been ongoing since 2014.

The operation began in the early hours, with Russian forces attacking from multiple directions, including from Russian territory, Belarus and the Russian-annexed region of Crimea.

The invasion involve

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