Andriy Yarmolenko demands Russian stars break Ukraine silence as West Ham forward blasts 'why are you sitting like sh*theads?'
The 32-year-old Ukrainian international has taken to social media to compel Russian footballers to speak up about the invasion.by Liam Bryce, https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/authors/liam-bryce/ · Daily Record
Ukrainian star Andriy Yarmolenko has called on Russian footballers to condemn the invasion of his home country.
The West Ham forward has pleaded angrily with a number of players to break their silence on the harrowing war unfolding in Eastern Europe.
In an impassioned message on Instagram, the 32-year-old compelled stars such as Artem Dzyuba and former Arsenal winger Andrey Arshavin to speak out and condemn Vladimir Putin.
The Ukraine international accused them of "sitting like sh*theads and not saying anything".
Yarmolenko said: "I’m Andriy Yarmolenko, a Ukraine national team player, I was born in St Peterburg but grew up in Ukraine and regard myself as 100 per cent Ukrainian.
“I have a question for Russia players.
“Guys, why are you sitting like sh*theads, and not saying anything? In my country they’re killing people, killing wives, killing mothers, killing our children. But you're saying nothing, you’ve given no comments.
“Tell me please what will happen if all of you together, united, show the people what is really happening in my country.
“I know a lot of you, I’m familiar with many of you and you all told me, ‘it shouldn’t be like this’, that your president is acting incorrectly.
‘So guys, you have influence over the people. Show this, I am asking you, please!
“I know some of you like to show your balls on camera (Dzyuba) but now the time’s come to show your balls in real life.
“Thank you for your attention! Glory to Ukraine.”
Yarmolenko is a likely inclusion in the Ukraine squad to face Scotland in the World Cup play-off semi-final on March 24, if the fixture is able to go ahead.
Manager Oleksandr Petrakov has revealed he's in talks with his domestic-based players to see if it's possible to fulfill their World Cup showdown in Scotland in three weeks.
SFA chiefs are awaiting a decision from UEFA and FIFA on the Hampden fixture.
Ukraine had 16 domestic-based players in their last squad and all males from 18-60 are currently not allowed to leave the country, which is under martial law, with no exceptions.
Petrakov has been in touch with some of his players who are holed up in the country and abroad, while the invasion goes ahead.
The 64-year-old said: "I have spoken to several members of the national team who are still in the country. I would prefer not to say where they are at the moment.
"I have also spoken to Andriy Yarmolenko at West Ham and Oleksandr Zinchenko at Manchester City. All these guys are as shocked as I am.
"I was in Turkey with the domestic clubs at their pre-season training camps and they told me there that Russia would invade us, but I didn't believe it.
"We don't know yet what will happen.
"What should happen in football is that Russian clubs are never allowed back. They should be only allowed to play each other for the rest of time.
"Those Russian clubs say nothing. They should be sent here and see what they have done to my country. They deserve every punishment they get.
"I will never speak Russian again. For 64 years I spoke it as my mother tongue, but not anymore. I will never utter another word in Russian again."