Igor Belanov, the former striker who won the 1986 Ballon d’Or, has joined Ukraine’s armed forces in a bid to help his country following Russia’s invasion.
Belanov won eight titles at Dynamo Kiev and also played for German sides Borussia Moenchengladbach and Eintracht Braunschweig in the 1980s and 1990s.But now the 61-year-old – who is one of three Ukrainians along with Oleh Blokhin (1975) to win the Ballon d’Or – has followed the likes of Oleksandr Usyk to become the latest sporting icon from the country to take up arms.
The ex-forward also met up with the president of the Ukraine FA, Andriy Pavelko, after the latter visited Belanov’s hometown of Odessa on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Belanov also brought his 1986 Ballon d’Or to a hospital in the war-torn city to show it off to some of the injured servicemen receiving treatment there.Belanov then posted a series of images of him holding a gun and in photos with other soldiers before posting on Facebook: ‘Amazing courage and inexhaustible fighting spirit!’All this and much more characterizes our soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. We are with you!