Football stars dodge flight to Ukraine
Ukraine's political crisis is taking a toll on world football with six stars from the Shakhtar Donetsk club failing to return to the country from pre-season training in France.
French media partners Infosport and Canal Plus have reported the players missed a flight from Lyon to Ukraine on Saturday night (NZT Sunday) after a pre-season friendly.
Five South American players have been named: Brazil stars Douglas Costa, Fred, Dentinho, Alex Teixeira and Argentina's Facundo Ferreyra.
Donetsk was at the centre of Ukraine's political turmoil. It was the region where Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 crashed last week after being shot down by a missile.
The missing players were all on massive deals. If their uneasiness with the Ukraine political turmoil was the cause of them not wanting to return to Ukraine, there would be no lack of interest from other European clubs to sign them up.