Manchester City football club of England have invited a Ukrainian refugee to use their training facilities after his contract was cancelled at a Russian club.
Andriy Kravchuk – a former team mate of Manchester City player Oleksandr Zinchenko in Shakhtar Donetsk’s academy – terminated his deal at Torpedo Moscow after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
On Thursday, March 31, Manchester City announced that the 23-year-old started training with City’s Elite Development Squad and will remain with the Premier League champions until the end of the season.
Zinchenko played a part in facilitating the Ukraine Under-21 international’s arrival after he fled for Manchester.
“Leaving the club was the only decision,’ Kravchuk said.
‘I felt really uncomfortable. People in Ukraine would not understand me if I continued to play there. I cannot believe it’s happened. In the 21st century, in the middle of Europe. I still can’t find the words.’
Kravchuk became aware of the attacks on his homeland while away on pre-season with Torpedo Moscow in Turkey.
He was woken from sleep at 5am by his mother on February 24 after the first missiles were launched at his homeland.
‘Her first words to me were: “Russia is bombing us.” It’s shock. I was destroyed inside. I am in groups on my phone and always receiving messages with bombing alerts. Every time those alerts come through I am so anxious. Your only thought is that my family can die.’
The club also announced he will move into one of City’s academy apartments next week as he is still in a hotel as at press time.