Euro divides residents of war-ravaged eastern Ukraine
As Ukraine prepares to face England in the Euro 2020 quarter-finals, locals in the eastern city of Donetsk disagree on who to support. Ukraine lost control of the industrial city to Russia-backed separatists seven years ago. And some residents there feel closer to Russia, even though they live on territory that is internationally recognized as Ukraine. It was in Donetsk, where Ukraine hosted England at Euro 2012, a time that Sergei Rudenko is nostalgic for, you know, you have to experience the atmosphere, be there, feel it. Words won’t explain how it was. There were many countries, people from different backgrounds from all over the world. And they were involved in a joint project. “After the political change in the region, some in Donetsk changed their sporting loyalty and supported the Russian national soccer team instead of the Ukraine at the European Championship the group stage was eliminated. “I cheered for Russia, but it worked. Then I cheered for France, but it also eliminated. Now I am cheering for England. During England-Ukraine game, I’m just going to cheer on England. “The Ukrainian government, who want Donestsk and the region back, tried to use the tournament to promote unity. Ukraine also got a euro jersey last month revealed that shows the country’s borders, including Crimea, which has sparked anger in Russia, which says Crimea is part of their territory even though it is still internationally recognized as Ukraine.