MOSCOW -- Fans of two-time defending Russian champion Zenit St. Petersburg are calling for non-white and gay players to be excluded from the team.
Landscrona, the largest Zenit fan club, released a manifesto Monday demanding the club field an all-white, heterosexual team. It added that "dark-skinned players are all but forced down Zenit's throat now, which only brings out a negative reaction" and said gay players were "unworthy of our great city."
Zenit were the only topflight Russian team never to have signed a minority until this summer, when they acquired Brazilian striker Hulk and Belgian midfielder Axel Witsel for 80 million euros ($105 million). French midfielder Yann M'Vila declined a move to the club in August after receiving death threats.
The fan club insisted that "we are not racists and for us the absence of black Zenit players is just an important tradition that underlines the team's identity and nothing more."
So who is ready for the Russian World Cup in 6 years?