Shakhtar 1:1 Dynamo
Zorya 2:2 Stal
Zirka 1:0 Karpaty
Vorskla 2:1 Volyn
Chornomorets 1:0 Olexandriya
Olympik 3:0 Dnipro
The 50th Ukrainian Derby in the Ukrainian Premier Legaue ended in stalemate as Shakhtar came from behind to draw 1:1 with Dynamo Kyiv, in Shakhtar’s designated ‘home’ fixture, which was played in front of 40,000 people at the Metalist Stadium in Kharkiv. Oleh Husyev had given Dynamo the lead after he converted from the penalty spot but Dentinho salvaged a point for the Miners with a goal in the 75th minute. In typical Ukrainian derby style, the game saw eleven yellow cards, but avoided a red card. Following the game a popular joke to emerge was that the referee tried helping Dynamo, the commentator supported Shakhtar and the stadium sang for Metalist. Shakhtar remain three points clear at the top of the league ahead of Dynamo.
Third place Zorya were involved in a dramatic tie with Stal, coming from two goals down with minutes to spare, to sneak a point. Stal had taken the lead early on through Kvame Karikafi and Denys Vasin doubled their lead shortly after the break, despite Stal being reduced to ten men following Serhiy Voronin’s second yellow card. It took until 80 minutes for Zorya to finally respond and they got a double salvo in a couple of minutes as Jelko Ljubelovic and Olexandr Karavaev saved a point. Stal were then reduced to nine men following Gor Malakyan’s dismissal but managed to hold on for an impressive point.
Zirka got their first win on their return to the UPL as they defeated Karpaty 1:0 curtesy of a late Artem Favorov penalty. Zirka dominated possession against the Green Lions, who had Artur Navortyasov sent off late on to compound their misery. Despite having some impressive performances in the early weeks of the season, Karpaty have struggled in recent weeks and remain at the foot of the table, now six points behind Volyn and Zirka.
Vorskla continued their impressive start to the season with a 2:1 win against Volyn. Dmytro Khlobas and Sanjar Tursynov scored the goals for Vorskla, while Anatoliy Didenko scored a penalty in reply for Volyn.
After three straight defeats at the start of the campaign, Chornomorets have turned it around completely with a fourth consecutive victory as they beat Olexandriya 1:0 in Odesa. It was an own goal from Andriy Gitchenko which sealed the result and Chornomorets will be turning their attention to Europe if they can keep up this form.
Dnipro continued their early season inconsistencies as they were on the end of a 3:0 mauling at the hands of Olympik Donetsk. Andriy Bohdanov scored a first half hat trick which earned the plaudits in an impressive win for Olympik which propels them to the top half of the table.
In our UPL fantasy league, FC Luczka scored 48 points securing Andriy Luczka the Manager of the Week award, while Dynamo Bantams have seen their lead reduced to only 8 points.
Elsewhere in Europe, Yevhen Konoplyanka made his debut in the Bundesliga in Schalke 04’s 2:0 lose to FC Bayern. Konoplynaka started the match but was substituted in the 55th minute. Artem Kravets scored on his debut in La Liga for Granada and Roman Zozulya came off the bench to make his first appearance for Real Betis. In Greece, Dmytro Chygrynskyi and Yevhen Shakhov both made their debuts in Round One of the Greek Superleague.
During midweek, the focus will be in Europe as the Champions League and Europa League Group stages begin. First up, in the Champions League, Dynamo host Napoli at the NSC Olympiyskyi on Tuesday evening. On Thursday, Zorya host Fenerbache in the early kick off and Shakhtar head to Konyaspor.