“I may look like a foreign agent right now, but it’s not like that,” Panarin said. “I think that the people who hush up the problems are more like foreign agents than those who talk about them. If I think about problems, I am coming from a positive place, I want to change something, to have people live better.”Although he admitted that he was afraid of facing backlash and punishment for the interview, he said that shouldn’t be the case regardless and that he should be able to express his thoughts whether they’re positive or not. Additionally, he said that even though he’s an athlete, he should still be free to share his thoughts.”I think it’s wrong [to say this],” Panarin added. “Athletes should pay attention to what’s going on in the country. They should have a position. I don’t want anyone to mess with mine,” “I think [Putin] no longer understands what’s right and what’s wrong,” Panarin said (translated by journalist Slava Malmond). “Psychologically, it’s not easy for him to judge the situation soberly. He has a lot of people who influence his decisions. But if everyone is walking around you for 20 years telling you what a great guy you are and how great a job you are doing, you will never see your mistakes.”Panarin recently signed a seven-year, $81.5 million deal with the Rangers at the start of free agency after leading the Blue Jackets with 28 goals and 87 points in 2018-19.MORE: Rangers get new star winger in Artemi PanarinHe mentioned in the interview that used to be supportive of the president until he came to the United States in 2015 and started to read American news and learn more about politics, which he mentioned he “was never really interested in” due to his focus on hockey. However, once he started to adopt American culture and engage with network news channels, he started to feel that “something is wrong [in Russia].””I just understood what type of horror is going on here. It’s enough for a person to just see the two sides and he will understand everything,” Panarin told Golovin. “You don’t even need to be super smart, just be open to another opinion, that’s all. . . Before, I was leaning towards that same atmosphere that is currently in our country: that everyone is attacking us, everyone is oppressing us. Now I know that there are good people there who think well of us. There are political games. There are reasons why they impose sanctions on us.”He went on to mention how he believes the lawlessness is an issue in Russia, and how there is no regulation. He also discussed that freedom of speech and freedom of expression is restricted, and in turn, that doesn’t allow many to share their thoughts or point out problems in the country.Ultimately, he said his comments, though critical, have good intentions. The past few years have seen more NHL players speak out against Russian President Vladimir Putin and New York Rangers winger Artemi Panarin took his turn Thursday.In a candid interview with Alexander Golovin, the 27-year-old was honest in expressing his lack of support for Putin and his administration.
Rwanda’s women’s coach Jean Baptiste Kayiranga said that they are preparing a strong team because they need to prove a point at home. ” We are taking this tournament very seriously because we must impress in-front of our fans,” he added.The Ugandan team that finished fourth at the last Championship have also included Jean Sseninde who features for Crystal Palace Ladies team in the English Women Premier League, Fazah Ikwaput and Leticia Nabbossa who ply their trade with Gokulam Kerala in India.***URNShare on: WhatsApp Uganda Crested Cranes training ahead of the 2018 CECAFA ChampionshipKampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Rwanda are preparing to host the 2018 Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (CECAFA) Women’s Challenge Cup slated for May 12-22th at the Stade de Kigali.Bonnie Mugabe, the spokesperson and head of Communication at the Rwanda Football Federation (FERWAFA) told URN on Monday that they are ready to host the regional tournament. ” We are determined to host a successful tournament and also ensure that our team performs well,” said Mugabe.The official added that after successfully hosting the 2016 Africa Nations Championship (CHAN), they are always determined to ensure tournaments organised by Rwanda are well managed.Nicholas Musonye, the CECAFA Secretary General said the CECAFA Women Challenge Cup attract eight nations which will be grouped in two pools of four teams each. The participating nations include; hosts Rwanda, Kenya, Uganda, Zanzibar, Burundi, Ethiopia, Djibouti and defending champions Tanzania.The Women’s Challenge Cup was revived last year once again since 1989. Uganda hosted the 2016 edition in Njeru where Tanzania beat Kenya in the final.