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West Ham and Ukraine star Andriy Yarmolenko is granted compassionate leave by his club

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West Ham and Ukraine footballer Andriy Yarmolenko is granted compassionate leave by his club – after members of his family were caught up in Russia’s invasion, with star ‘upset’ during a ‘really difficult time’

  • Andriy Yarmolenko’s family are among millions caught up in the Ukraine crisis
  • David Moyes revealed the West Ham player has been given compassionate leave 
  • The 32-year-old forward captains his country and has earned 106 caps in total 
  • It remains to be seen when he will return to training at his club’s Rush Green base


Ukraine captain Andriy Yarmolenko has been granted compassionate leave by West Ham to come to terms with the Russian invasion of his homeland, with members of his family among millions caught up in the crisis.

The war in Ukraine has left Yarmolenko, 32, in a bad place, according to his manager, David Moyes, who accepted his player’s request for time away from football and said he hopes his family stay safe.

The forward, who has worn the armband for his country and won 106 caps in total, will miss West Ham’s Premier League game against Wolves this weekend.

It remains to be seen when he will return to training at their Rush Green base, although Moyes only described the time off as a ‘few days’ on Friday.

West Ham have also asked Yarmolenko how they can help him and his family as the war unfolds in Ukraine.

‘I spoke with him yesterday (Thursday) at training and he was upset as you can imagine and rightly so,’ Moyes said. ‘We just hope that everything goes well and all his family members and close family keep safe.

‘He is not in a really good position at the moment, I have to say. We have given him a few days off. It is very difficult.

‘The club have asked me to ask him if there is anything we can do for him and if we can, we will certainly help him.

West Ham and Ukraine footballer Andriy Yarmolenko has been granted compassionate leave

West Ham and Ukraine footballer Andriy Yarmolenko has been granted compassionate leave

David Moyes said the player was'not in a really good position' after the invasion of his country

David Moyes said the player was ‘not in a really good position’ after the invasion of his country

‘He has asked me if he can have a few days off and I have granted him that. It is a really difficult time for him and his family and we respect that.’ 

Yarmolenko moved to London after signing for West Ham in a £17.5million move from Borussia Dortmund in 2018.

Like other Ukrainian footballers, Yarmolenko has spoken out on social media.

Soldiers tasked with defending Kyiv from the advancing Russian troops take up positions

Soldiers tasked with defending Kyiv from the advancing Russian troops take up positions 

Russian troops move towards Ukraine on the road near Armiansk, Crimea in a large convoy

Russian troops move towards Ukraine on the road near Armiansk, Crimea in a large convoy

‘I call on every Ukrainian to unite, to show his loyalty to the country, to support our army,’ he wrote on Instagram.

‘Our strength is freedom, the right to choose, respect and human values.

‘Our choice is European Ukraine. We are a strong nation, we are on our land and the truth is behind us.’

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