Sunday 25 March 2018

Lokomotiv Moscow midfielder Dmitry Tarasov taunts Turkish fans with Vladimir Putin T-shirt

Lokomotiv Moscow's Dmitri Tarasov after a match against Fenerbahce AP
Lokomotiv Moscow's Dmitri Tarasov after a match against Fenerbahce AP

Matt Payton

A Russian footballer has caused controversy by revealing a T-shirt showing Vladimir Putin's face after a European match in Istanbul against the Turkish side Fenerbahce.

Dmitry Tarasov, a midfielder for Lokomotiv Moscow, took off his football shirt to show a vest with a picture the Russian President wearing navy uniform.

Below the picture was printed the phrase "The most polite president".

Fenerbahce won the match 2-0.

Tensions between Russia and Turkey have been high after Turkish forces shot down a Russian jet in November allegedly in its airspace.

Russia's support of the President Assad regime in Turkey has also caused relations to suffer between the two.

Following this incident, both Mr Putin and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan have been sharing angry words ever since.

Tarasov defended his actions in an interview with Russian news agency, R-Sport:  "It's my president. I respect him and decided to show that I'm always with him and prepared to give my support."

"What was written on that shirt was everything that I wanted to say."

Sources at UEFA say the midfielder may face a suspension of a minimum of 10 matches.

Locomotiv Moscow could also be fined.

Before the game, bottles had been thrown at the Lokomotiv Moscow team bus - Turkish Police said they made three arrests.

Independent News Service

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