Hockey forward Ostap Safin, who became Lady Togliatti’s replacement in the KHL last week, has renounced his Czech nationality and is expected to receive a Russian passport in the near future.
Rafik Jakubov, the sporting director of the newcomer to international competition, said so in an interview for the club’s website.
If Safin passes the test, he will not be considered an outsider in the KHL.
“After completing all the remaining documents, he will not be considered a legionnaire. Safin has renounced his Czech citizenship and should soon receive a Russian passport,” Jakubov said in today’s interview.
In the KHL, three foreigners are currently allowed to play on each team.
Togliatti confirmed the 24-year-old striker’s signing on Saturday. Safin was born in Prague, he grew up in Sparta, but his family comes from Russia.
Last season he played for his parent club, which he returned to from abroad.
Although he extended his contract with Sparta in March, the Czech club announced last week that Safin had asked for the contract to be terminated and the management accepted.
Safin played 41 games in the extra league, scoring eight goals and providing five assists. He added one goal in two playoff games. In the past, he played for the Czech national youth team and appeared at the Under-18 and Under-20 World Championships.
Despite the Russian invasion of Ukraine, three Czech hockey players are active in the KHL. At the beginning of July, defender David Sklenička signed a one-year contract with Barys Astana, another defender Libor Šulák signed a two-year contract with Omsk and striker Dmitrij Yashkin changed his shirt from Saint Petersburg to Kazan.
Jaškin, like Safin, has a Russian family, he was born in Omsk.
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