2013/14 Ukrainian Premier League: Matchday One
Zorya Luhansk 's Dmitry Khomchenovskiy
Tavriya Simferpol vs Zorya Luhansk
RSC Lokomotiv Stadium was the sight of the first match-up in this years Ukrainian Premier league as Tavriya Simferpol hosted Zorya Luhansk. Andrei Kuzmin was the Referee. Both clubs finished in bottom half of last years league table. Both are looking for improvement and maybe even a UEFA league spot.
Giannis Christopouls was hoping his club would give the home fans something to cheer about and grab a quick three points this year. Yuriy Vernydub was also thinking a early road win would be great but honestly any points you can get on road is good points.
Well the teams took the pitch and things stayed level for awhile until Dmitry Khomchenovskiy scored in 28th minute giving the road club a 1-0 lead. The score would stay that way to half, Zorya had to be feeling good after their first 45 minutes of football. A 1-0 lead on the road in first match of season, nothing could feel better.
Second Half began with Tavriya knowing they needed to get more physical and take control of this contest. Celio dos Santos got a little to aggressive and was given a yellow card in 62nd minute. Both clubs would not give an inch as both went back and forth against each other. With time running out Vitaliy Postranskyi of Zorya is given a yellow card. Dmitry Khomchenovskiy ended all hope for the home club as he scored his second goal in the 90th minute to cement Zorya's opening day win. Khomchenovskiy takes the early lead in goals scored while Zorya races to the top of the league table with the win.
Well we are finally here and the new season has kicked off. The Ukrainian Premier league has been approving tons of the last couple of years. With great clubs like Shakhtar Donetsk and Metalist Kharkiv they have jumped to the seventh position as best league in Europa for the 2014-15 season. This year they are ranked ninth behind Russia and the Netherlands both clubs they have since jumped.
Six clubs will see action in UEFA competitions this year. Shaktar Donetsk the defending champions will play in the Champions League along with Metalist Kharkiv. Shaktar starts in group stage while Metalist begins in third qualifying round. Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk and Dynamo Kyiv will start in the Play-off round of this years Europa League tourney. They are joined by Metalurh Donetsk and Chornomorets Odesa. Metalurh begins in third qualifying round while Odesa begind in second qualifying round.
Right now they are ten points behind France for that sixth spot which would give them another club in the Champions League. With a couple more solid years this league could easily be in Top 5 of Europe.
Metalurh Zaporizhya vs Illichivets Mariupol
Slavutych Arena played host to a match between Illichivets Mariupol and the home club Metalurh Zaporizhya. Illichivets was five points away from earning a UEFA league spot last year so hopes are high that they can grab one this year. Metalurh was the worst club in the league last year and do to some weird circumstances they were not relegated and will get another crack at it.
The match started with a lot of fan fare as both clubs looked for a promising start. Illichivets Coach Ivan Balan knew he wanted a big road win to start the season. Ivan Ordets picked up an early yellow for Illichivets. Four minutes later in 20 th minute Ruslan Fomin scored to give the road club the lead. Right before halftime Igor Korotetskiy and Junior picked up yellow cards for Metalurh. The second half saw no goals scored as only action was Sergiy Garashchenkov of Illichivets picking up a yellow card in 50th minute.
Those three points will be big for Illichivets later in theyear. Metalurh will need to regroup fast so they dont fall to far behind.
Roman Zozulya of Dnipro
FC Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk vs Arsenal Kyiv
Dnipro Arena was the sight of the match-up between Arsenal Kyiv, eight in last years standing. They missed a UEFA spot by only four points facing off against the home club Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk. Dnipro finished fourth last year and will play in the Europa League this season starting in the Playoff round.
Dnipro Coach Juande Ramos couldn't have been more pleased with.they way his.club started this match. Twelve minutes in and Eugen Seleznyov had scored. That was followed by Roman Zozulya goal in the 32nd minute to give the home club a 2-0 lead. All Arsenal managed in first half was a yellow card in 25th minute to Kyrylo Petrov.
Second half wasnt any better for Arsenal as Yevhen Konoplyanka scored in 74th minute to give Dnipro a commanding 3-0 lead. That is how match would end as both clubs managed only yellow cards rest of time in second half. Dnipro's Matheus picked up one in 60th minute while Yury Bushman picked up one for Arsenal. Dnipro looked great while Arsenal has a long road ahead.
Does Shakhtar Donetsk repeat as Champions
Karpaty Lviv vs Vorskla Poltava
Ukraina Stadium was the site for a match-up pitting Karpaty Lviv vs Vorskla Poltava. Both clubs finished near the bottom of the league table last year, they both need a good start to make sure they don't get sent down. Karpaty's coach Oleksandr Sevidov was hoping his club was ready to play in front of the home crowd. He knew anything less than a win would be a failure at home. On the other side Vorskla's coach Anatoily Momot was looking for at least a point out of this road contest.
The first half started off slow with not that much happening until Andriy Savchenko had a ball go off of him into the goal giving Vorskla Poltava a 1-0 lead off the own goal in the 22nd minute. The rest of the half saw a few hard tackles as three players were given yellow cards. Vorskla's Armend Dallku and Oleg Mishechenko got ones along with Andriy Gitchenko of Karpaty. Vorskla had to happy with a 1-0 halftime lead.
Ahmed Januzi made sure Vorskla was leaving here with all three points as his goal in 51st minute gave the road club a 2-0 lead. Karpaty could never get anything going and would open the season with a home lose. Vorskla did pick up another yellow card in 83rd minute by Pavlo Rebenok but they had to be pleased to leave with three points and a great start to the new season.
Shakhtar Donetsk vs FC Hoverla Uzhhorod
The defending Champions open the new season at home playing in front of their rowdy fans in Donbass Arena. Their opponent was FC Hoverla Uzhhorod who benefited from some weird circumstances to stay in the top league of Ukraine. Donetsk's coach Mircea Lucescu wants only one thing this season, that is to win the title again and have Champions league success.
The first half started out pretty tame as Donetsk did not seem to be getting full energy out of their club. It could be first game jitters but they finally woke up late in half. They could not score but you knew things were going to be interesting in second half. Uzhhorod also didn't manage anything but did get their name put down on score sheet when Sergiy Lyulka received a yellow card in 21st minute.
Donetsk started the second half with a bang when Dmytro Grechyshkin scored in 47th minute to give the home club a 1-0 lead. Things called down for a bit as both clubs had players pick up yellow cards. Luiz Adriano got one in 63rd minute for Donetsk while Dmytro Trukhin picked up one in 77th minute for Uzhhorod. Adriano would make up for his with Donetsk's second goal of the game in the 89th minute to seal the win for the Champions.
Dynamo Kyiv vs Volyn Lutsk
Dynamo Kyiv finished in third place last year and missed out on playing in the Champions League. They opened their 2013/14 season with a home match against Volyn Lutsk in Kiev Olympic Stadium. Volyn Lutsk did not play good at all last season and just avoided being relegated.
This match-up started with a bang as Yaroslav Kinash put Volyn up 1-0 in the second minute of play. The home crowd was in utter silence. Next minute and we already had a yellow card as Redvan Memeshev picked one up for Volyn. A few minutes later Dynamo picked up a yellow when Domagoj Vida picked it up. Things settled down for a few minutes until Dynamo leveled the score behind a goal from Mbokani in the 28th minute. Volyn would pick up another yellow card when Vance Sikov got one in the 32nd minute.
With the scored tied at 1-1, you would think the second half would have been exciting. It was for all the yellow cards thrown. Hard tackles and bad tackles dominated play in second half as Volyn picked up three yellow cards one resulting in a red card. Bogdan Shershun and Vitaliy Pryndeta picked ones up while Redvan Memeshev picked up his second in 91st minute. Yevhen Khacheridi received one for Dynamo. The game finished at 1-1, with that said that is a win for Volyn who steals a point from Dynamo.
Metalist Kharkiv vs Metalurh Donetsk
The last match of the first weekend was played at Metalist Stadium. Metalist Kharkiv defeated Metalurh Donetsk 1-0 to please their home crowd.
Marko Devic scored in the 77th minute to put Metalist ahead, a lead they wouldn't surrender. Kepping with the yellow party of the earlier matches three more players recieved yellows in this game.
FC Sevastopol vs FC Chornomorets
Sevastopol Sports Complex was the site of the match featuring FC Sevastopol and FC Chornomorets.
Both clubs traded first half goals as Elis Bakaj put Chornomorets ahead in the 39th minute but Sevastopol would answer four minutes later Aleksandr Kovpak scored for the home club. The only other action in the first half was in the 22nd minute when Franck Dja Djedje picked up a yellow for Chornomorets.
The second half was uneventful as a yellow card in the 71st minute from Bakaj was the only action worth speaking of. Chornomorets might be happy with a draw before the start Europa League play this Tuesday.