Sheffield United star Anel Ahmedhodzic's commendable stance on his country's controversial Russia friendly

Anel Ahmedhodžić, the Sheffield United defender, has joined two high-profile Bosnia and Herzegovina teammates in refusing to play against Russia next month after plans for a controversial friendly were announced.
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Ahmedhodžić’s country agreed to face Russia in a friendly on November 19 in St Petersburg, just before the World Cup in Qatar is due to begin. Bosnia didn’t qualify for the finals while Russia are barred, amid the conflict in Ukraine.

Bosnia stars Edin Dzeko and Miralem Pjanic have voiced their opposition to the game, with Ahmedhodžić adding: "I was very shocked when I saw it. I don't know what to say except that I'm against that match.

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“We all know what happens and it would be a big mistake to play against Russia.

“I have a friend from Ukraine and when I saw this, I was really disappointed.”

Pjanic, who has 107 caps for his country and previously played for Roma, Juventus and Barcelona, said: “The decision is not good. I am speechless. In the national FA, they know what I think.”

Former Manchester City striker Dzeko, the national team captain, added in quotes reported by Bosnian media: “I am against the playing of this match; I am always and only for peace.

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“I have my position which is clear and which does not include playing this match, while innocent people are suffering. I stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine in these difficult times for them.”

Ahmedhodžić has started life at Bramall Lane superbly, with three goals and an assist in his seven league games so far.

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