Contrary to a statement from Anatoliy Konkov
, the president of the Football Federation of Ukraine, that the
Ukrainian national team wouldn't fly to Cyprus to face the USA in Wednesday's friendly because of the current crisis in Ukraine, U.S. Soccer said it had received confirmation that Ukraine would be
traveling to Larnaca for the game scheduled to kick off at 9 p.m. local time (2 p.m. ET) and air on ESPN2, WatchESPN, UniMas.
Konkov's statement on Ukrainian television network ICTV : "We cannot hold the national
championship so what kind of football can we talk of at all? If we do not have an opportunity to play on home soil, why shall we go to Cyprus in those troubled times for your country? We play for our
people and country. Our team do not fly to Cyprus and stay at home."
The Ukraine-USA game was originally moved from Kharkiv -- a pro-Russian city in eastern Ukraine -- to Larnaca
in light of the violent response by police to protests in Kiev. Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych
was ousted and replaced by a pro-western government. The
crisis escalated to a Russian occupation of the Crimean peninsula and Ukraine's mobilization for war.
Konkov is a former Soviet national team player who then went into coaching, spending
time at six Ukrainian clubs in addition to teams in Russia and Azerbaijan. He also briefly coached the Ukraine national team in 1995.
The ongoing crisis came as the Jurgen Klinsmann
continued to work his team of mostly European-based players in Frankfurt, Germany. That squad was reduced
to 21 players over the weekend as Michael
, Mix Diskerud
and Tim Ream
all withdrew. (Jonathan Spector