Valentin Balakhnichev claims to have lodged a complaint to the IOC Ethics Commission ©Getty Images

Valentin Balakhnichev, former President of the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF) and who is now serving a life ban from the sport, has complained to the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) Ethics Commission about the comments of Richard Pound.

Pound, the longest-serving IOC member and founding President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), warned earlier this month that Russia could be stripped of the FIFA World Cup in 2018 if other nations refused to compete in response to the country's doping problems.

"The hosting of tournaments, including the FIFA 2018 World Cup in Russia, will be a consensus reached within FIFA," Pound told R-Sport.

"Nevertheless we mustn’t rule out, that some countries can simply refuse to take part in the Russian World Cup in response to their doping history, and it will be the beginning of the possibility of stripping Russia of the right to host."

Balakhnichev, also the former International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) treasurer, was part of a cabal of officials banned for life early last year following claims they accepted bribes in return for the covering up of Russian doping cases. 

He denies wrongdoing and is appealing the verdict.

Balakhnichev claims Pound has broken sporting rules on impartiality and neutrality.

"I have indeed filed a complaint against Pound with the IOC Ethics Commission," he told R-Sport.

"In particular, [Pound] gave unacceptable prompts with regards to Russia on how to deprive it of 2018 World Cup.

"It was a hint to all soccer countries to boycott Russia."

Senior IOC member Richard Pound has denied counselling any views about whether the Russian doping scandal will affect the 2018 FIFA World Cup ©Getty Images
Senior IOC member Richard Pound has denied counselling any views about whether the Russian doping scandal will affect the 2018 FIFA World Cup ©Getty Images

He reportedly also claimed that Pound had been preparing a complaint against him while working for WADA, which "cast a shadow on his impartiality".

FIFA President Gianni Infantino has claimed there is no chance of the World Cup being moved out of Russia in response to evidence of Russian doping in the McLaren Report

Pound, however, has denied any wrongdoing.

"If he read the comments, even as reported, he should be able to see that I was not counselling anything, just commenting on what FIFA might have to consider if some important countries were to state that they would not participate," the Canadian told insidethegames.

An IOC spokesperson confirmed the case had been launched.

"Pursuant to the rules of procedure, the IOC chief ethics and compliance officer will analyse the complaint and then pass it on to the commission chair," they said.

"The IOC is not in a position to make any further comment at this point."

The IOC Ethics Commission refused to publicly condemn Russia's Alexander Popov - then an IOC member who has since graduated to honorary status - when he criticised IAAF President Sebastian Coe during last year's Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Popov, a four-time Olympic swimming gold medallist, criticised the Coe after Russian athletes were barred from competing at Rio 2016 unless they could prove they were operating in an "effective testing system" outside the country.

"What goes around, comes around," Popov warned. 

"I hope he sleeps well.

"Sleep well."