Russian attack on Ukraine: Schalke 04 removes Gazprom from T-shirts

Status: 02/24/2022 2:55 PM

At Schalke 04, after the Russian attack on Ukraine, the relationship with Gazprom collapses. S04 takes the main sponsor of T-shirts. In addition, Gazprom’s representative on the supervisory board resigned.

football club Schalke 04 He draws the first conclusions from Russia’s attack on Ukraine and no longer advertises Russia’s state-owned energy company Gazprom on its T-shirts. The club announced, Thursday, February 24, 2022, that “in light of the events and developments and the escalation of the past days”, the letters of the main Russian sponsor will be removed from the shirt in the upcoming matches.

This came as a result of talks with the German company “Gazprom Germania”. Instead, “Schalke 04” will simply be written on the shirts.

Gramuzis jacket at a press conference without the Gazprom logo

Even at Schalke’s pre-match press conference on Thursday in Karlsruhe (Saturday, 1:30 p.m.), Gazprom’s logo was missing from S04 coach Dimitrios Gramuzis’ sweatshirt. But it was still visible on the sponsor’s wall in the background.

Millions of Gazprom vital to Schalke

Vladimir Putin (right) and Clemens Toenes, Chairman of Schalke 04’s Supervisory Board, announced the partnership in 2007.

Photo: WDR / dpa

Like many other sports clubs, associations and competitions, Schalke is dependent on the funds of a Russian company. The contract with “Gazprom Germania” runs until 2025. The partnership was started in 2007 by then-chairman of the Supervisory Board, Clemens Tonis, who describes himself as a personal friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

In the second Bundesliga, nine million euros are said to flow from the Russian gas supplier annually, with an upgrade likely to rise to 15 million euros per season. The club said in a statement on Wednesday that S04 remains committed to the partnership.

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“We are also shocked by the images that are happening there. But I have to ask for your understanding that the whole thing has taken a new turn Thursday morning and we need time to act on this advice. See what that means for Schalke 04,” press spokesman Mark Sekman said on Thursday.

Club leaders are working on a solution with Gazprom

In any case, Schalke CEO Bernd Schroeder and Chairman of the Supervisory Board Axel Hefer made it clear that they are working hard to find a solution with Gazprom. Perhaps the disappearance of Gazprom’s lettering from the T-shirts, which was announced shortly thereafter, was the first step in the breakup.

There are many legal questions that need to be clarified in this regard, which probably also revolve around potential contractual penalties. Will Schalke 04 have to repay the financial contributions already received?

Supervisory Board retires Warnage after US sanctions

Earlier on Thursday, Matthias Warnig resigned from the mandate of the S04 Supervisory Board. He is the CEO of Nord Stream 2 and is under US sanctions in the wake of the Russian attack on Ukraine.

The US Treasury put it on its sanctions list on Wednesday (local time). Individuals on this US sanctions list are referred to as “Specially Designated Nationals.” Their accounts and assets have been frozen, and US citizens are generally prohibited from doing business with them.

Gazprom & Co. – Warnig rooted in the Russian economy

As a result, Warnage resigned as S04’s supervisory board “with immediate effect” on Thursday morning, the club from the Ruhr region announced. The 66-year-old has been a member of the committee since July 2019 as a select member, sent by main Russian sponsor Gazprom. In addition to Gazprom’s Nord Stream 2 AG (managing director since 2006), Warnegg is also involved in other Russian trading companies.

Warning is personally linked to Putin

Warnig, a former member of S04’s supervisory board, is considered a close confidant of Putin, who awarded him the “Russian Medal of Honor” in 2012. In an interview with Wirtschaftswoche three and a half years ago, Warnig revealed: “There is an unfiltered exchange of views between us. “.

Like Putin, the 66-year-old has a former secret service and worked in the GDR as a Stasi agent for the state apparatus. Before German reunification, he had risen to become a captain in the espionage department.

Source: wdr.de

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