Shuster will be doing a nightly football show during the World Cup, by the way - just like Svoboda Slova, this will be a resurrected, formerly Russian show.
Here's a bit of a background, from a 2002 profile:
Radio Liberty, which never particularly liked Shuster's independent attitude, ended up firing him over a perceived conflict of interest during Gazprom's takeover of NTV from Vladimir Gusinsky's Media-MOST in April 2001. The incident was perhaps the biggest controversy of Shuster's career, costing him a number of friends in political and journalistic circles.
Shuster, who had firmly backed Yevgeny Kiselyov's team of journalists at NTV and fiercely criticized the takeover bid, resumed working as the host of a soccer show on NTV just a few days after Gazprom had seized the station. He had begun producing the show, "The Third Half," a couple of years earlier. Radio Liberty said that, by continuing with the program, Shuster had violated its professional code and policy over conflicts of interests.
"There was nothing like this in the contract," Shuster said Wednesday. "I began doing 'The Third Half' in 1998, and there was no conflict of interest. It emerged only during the conflict between Gusinsky and Jordan. After the night of the takeover, of course, my decision to do soccer [on NTV] was perceived in a purely political way."