OREANDA-NEWS. Jonathan Taylor, the head of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Compliance Review Committee, explained why Russia will not lose the right to host four matches of the 2020 European Football Championship despite being suspended from holding other significant competitions due to a doping scandal.

“You’ve got to remember as well, we need to have one line for everyone. Yes, in football, the Euros is a really important event. In other sports, the continental championships really aren’t. So, you do have to have one that fits all,” Taylor said in the interview with Associated Press.

On December 9, WADA stripped the Russian Anti-Doping Agency of compliance with the World Anti-Doping Code. Russia was banned for four years from hosting major competitions (Olympic Games and world championships), and Russian athletes were not allowed to participate in such tournaments under the national flag.

Taylor believes that such sanctions against Russia are sufficiently stringent. He does not accept the idea that WADA made a soft decision. “Should it have been stronger? Well, I would say… it was the appropriate line to draw,” the sports official said.

The reason for the sanctions against Russia was the manipulation of data from the Moscow anti-doping laboratory. The investigation found that before the laboratory database was transferred to the WADA’s experts, changes were made to hide the violations of anti-doping rule by Russian athletes.

The European Football Championship will be held next summer in 12 European cities. Four matches will be held in Saint Petersburg: three group stage matches and one quarterfinal.