JELGAVA, Latvia — FK Jelgava is about to take on the biggest challenge in the club’s history when English Premier League newcomers Blackpool come to town.
Blackpool, who are directed by Latvian Velory Belokon agreed to the game late last week which is set to take place at the Jelgava Olympic Centre on Sept. 2.
It is a massive coup for Jelgava, who like Blackpool have just returned to the top tier of their domestic competition, be it in a much weaker league.
In what has already been a stellar season for the Jelgavites in which they have won the Latvian up, qualified for the UEFA Champions League qualifying and acquired a new stadium, this is surely the icing on the cake.
It will also be the first game played at the new stadium.
The match announcement has understandably failed to arouse any interest in the British media, not that Blackpool have not been enjoying more than their fair share of attention from the press.
Connection to Bagayev?
With political uprising in Kyrgyzstan, much attention has been turned to Belokon and his alleged business relationship with Maxim Bagayev, son of the former president who was ousted earlier this year.
It has been widely suspected that since the ousting of his father Bagayev had been hiding out in Latvia under the protection of Belokon. From there he has been accused of being the main instigator behind the rioting which began in Kyrgyzstan last week. It lead the government to issue a warrant for his arrest.
The warrant came to fruition on Monday when Bagayev was reportedly arrested by Interpol as he tried to enter England on a private jet. It is not yet clear where the jet departed from but Latvia is a very real suspect as country of origin.
Aside from football, Belokon has his finger in a number of pies including the media with ownership of various publications in Latvia and geology, with interests in gold in Kyrgyzstan. It is through this link that he is believed to have made his connections with the political elite of the Central Asian state.
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