Lewandowski first confirmed his opposition to the Russian army invasion of Ukraine inside days of it beginning in February. He known as for Poland to boycott enjoying Russia in a World Cup qualifying recreation.
The 2-time FIFA world participant of the yr obtained his reward from Ukraine nice Andriy Shevchenko at Poland’s nationwide stadium in Warsaw.
“Thanks Andriy. It was a pleasure to fulfill you!” Lewandowski wrote on his Instagram account. “It is going to be an honor for me to hold this captain’s armband within the colours of Ukraine to the World Cup.”
The star ahead’s public stance helped guarantee Poland didn’t play Russia in a World Cup qualification playoffs semifinal scheduled in Warsaw on March 24.
“We will not faux that nothing is going on,” Lewandowski mentioned then, two days earlier than FIFA and UEFA banned Russian groups from worldwide competitions — successfully eradicating Russia from the World Cup.
After Poland superior by way of the playoffs to the World Cup in Qatar, Ukraine misplaced to Wales in a playoffs remaining postponed till June to assist the crew put together amid the warfare that shut down home soccer.
The soccer ties between Poland and Ukraine, who co-hosted the 2012 European Championship, have seen Ukrainian nationwide and membership groups play “house” video games in worldwide competitions at Polish stadiums this season.
Ukraine will full their UEFA Nations League program in Poland subsequent week, internet hosting Scotland at Krakow.
Shevchenko, the 2004 Ballon d’Or winner when a standout striker with AC Milan, coached the Ukraine crew after they reached the Euro 2020 quarterfinals final yr.
UEFA additionally confirmed on Tuesday that Russia wouldn’t be allowed to take part within the 2024 European Championship.