A good test for The Dragons
Last updated: March 28, 2016 by Leon Marshal
|Venue:||Olympic Stadium (Kiev)|
Both teams have met twice so far in history, so this will be the third ever match between Ukraine and Wales. The previous two games finished with a 1-1 draw, both taking place in the qualifying campaign for The FIFA World Cup 2002.
Wales have qualified for the European Championship for the first time in their history. The biggest success for The Dragons at international level was reaching the quarter-finals (0-1 defeat to Brazil) of the FIFA World Cup 1958.
As an independent country, Ukraine has so far been represented twice at major tournaments (Euro 2016 will be the third time). In 2006, the Ukrainians reached the quarter-finals of the FIFA World Cup. They also took part in the Euro 2012, which they co-hosted with Poland, but were eliminated in the group stage. Ukraine will have to play against Germany, Northern Ireland and Poland in Euro 2016 in France.
Yevhen Konoplyanka seems to be the biggest threat for Wales’ defence. The winger has scored 6 goals in all tournaments for Sevilla this season. The 26-year-old Konoplyanka has scored 11 goals in 51 caps for the Ukraine.
Wales will be without Gareth Bale, who is going to miss the trip to Ukraine because of fitness concerns. Bale has recently suffered a calf muscle injury and that’s the main reason for his absence.
“If you look at his record he is not a player who misses unless he has to. He is not a player that says; ‘you know what may be I don’t need to be there’. “He knows we need him whenever we can have him and if it’s possible for him to be here, he is always here,” said the head coach Coleman about his superstar Gareth Bale.
Aaron Ramsey is also sidelined for the match against Ukraine. Arsenal’s midfielder is suffering from a thigh muscle strain. James Collins, Andy King, Paul Dummett and David Edwards are also going to miss the international friendly.
Chris Coleman’s players put on a good performance against Northern Ireland on Thursday. The final score was 1-1 and despite the absence of the key players for Wales, The Dragons played really well. Craig Cathcart opened for “The Norn Iron” in the 60th minute after a marking mistake by Ashley Williams, but the referee awarded The Dragons a penalty just a minute before the final whistle. Aberdeen’s forward Simon Church converted it and that was the last interesting action of the match.
The Ukrainians recorded a 1-0 victory against Cyprus in their previous international friendly. Despite winning the match, Ukraine showed they have big problems when they have to finish their attacks. The Ukrainians main strengths are set-pieces and their strong defence, which secured their place in the Euro 2016.
|Ukraine’s squad:||Andriy Pyatov (Shakhtar, Donetsk), Denys Boyko (Besiktas, Turkey), Mykyta Shevchenko (Zorya, Lugansk); Artem Fedetskyi (Dnipro, Dnipropetrovsk), Vyacheslav Shevchuk, Oleksandr Kucher, Yaroslav Rakytskyi (all – Shakhtar, Donetsk), Yevhen Khacheridi (Dynamo, Kyiv), Mykyta Kamenjuka (Zorya, Lugansk); Oleh Husiev, Andriy Yarmolenko, Serhiy Sydorchuk, Denys Garmash, Serhiy Rybalka (all – Dynamo, Kyiv), Ruslan Rotan (Dnipro, Dnipropetrovsk), Taras Stepanenko, Maxym Malyshev, Viktor Kovalenko (both – Shakhtar, Donetsk), Oleksandr Karavayev, Ivan Petryak (both – Zorya, Lugansk), Anatoliy Tymoschuk (Kairat, Kazakhstan), Yevhen Konoplyanka (Sevilla, Spain); Roman Zozulya (Dnipro, Dnipropetrovsk), Pylyp Budkivskyi (Zorya, Lugansk), Artem Kravets (Stuttgart, Germany);|
|Head coach:||Mikhail Fomenko|
|Wales’ squad:||Hennessey (Crystal Palace), Fon Williams (Inverness), Ward (Liverpool); A Williams (Swansea, capt), Chester (West Brom), Gunter (Reading), Matthews (Sunderland), Taylor (Swansea), Henley (Blackburn), Richards (Fulham), Davies (Tottenham), Vaughan (Nottingham Forest), Huws (Wigan), Allen (Liverpool), Ledley (Crystal Palace), MacDonald (Bournemouth), G Williams (Fulham), Isgrove (Southampton), Crofts (Brighton), J Williams (Crystal Palace), Cotterill (Birmingham), Robson-Kanu (Reading), Lawrence (Leicester), Church (MK Dons), Vokes (Burnley), Bradshaw (Walsall);|
|Head coach:||Chris Coleman|
Head to Head
|Last 5 meetings between the two sides|
|Date||Competition||Game Result||First Goal-scorer|
|06/06/01||WQE||Ukraine 1-1 Wales||H. Zubov 43′|
|28/03/01||WQE||Wales 1-1 Ukraine||J. Hartson 12′|