Dynamo Kyiv 1:2 Napoli
Dynamo fell to a home defeat to Napoli on Match Day One of the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League. After a slow start, Dynamo got a hold of the game and Denys Harmash gave the Kyiv side the lead. Andriy Yarmolenko’s cross found Viktor Tsyhankov who nodded it back for Harmash, who produced a lovely finish on the turn. Dynamo were in control of the game at this point but carelessness let it slip.
A cross from the left hand side tempted Olexandr Shovkovskyi to come, but Dynamo’s captain hesitated and Domogoj Vida was beaten to the ball by Arek Milik, who’s header looped over the veteran keeper who was left in no mans land. In first half stoppage time, Milik got his second as Dynamo once again failed to clear their defensive lines and another looping header made it 2:1 to Napoli.
In the second half Napoli started strongly and hit the post half way through, but Dynamo slowly came into the game, pushing for an equaliser. Andriy Yarmolenko was a constant threat and Viktor Tsyhankov was impressive, but Serhiy Sydorchuk got himself sent off for diving leaving Dynamo with a mountain to climb. Despite being down to ten men, Dynamo kept pressing but were unable to find the equaliser.
Serhiy Rebrov – “It’s a disappointing result and now we have to analyse our mistakes. However, we have to take the positives because all the players showed great commitment and worked really hard. We tried to stay compact and keep our shape but after we scored our guys probably tried to protect the result and that was a mistake. Napoli knew how to play against us; they got the ball wide and put in good crosses. They created spaces behind our defenders and used them effectively.”
In the groups other fixture, Besiktas got a late equaliser in their away tie at Benfica, which means Dynamo are bottom of Group B after Match Day One. Next up is an away tie at Besiktas, which Dynamo really need to win, to stand a chance of progressing to the last 16.
In the UEFA Youth League, Dynamo beat Napoli 4:1.
Zorya Luhansk 1:1 Fenerbache
Zorya Luhansk came within moments of claiming a famous victory on their Europa League Group stage debut. Playing the game in Odesa at the Chornomorets stadium, Zorya relished the occasion and made a livelier start than their more illustrious opponents, who are European regulars. In the first minute, Zorya had a chance as Ivan Petryak missed the post be centimetres. Zorya started the second half with more intensity and were quickly rewarded with the opening goal. Mykyta Kamenyuka played the ball from the flank into the danger zone where Zeljko Ljubenovic passed to Dmytro Hrechyshkin who left the keeper with no chance. This woke Fenerbache up who responded, they managed to carve out a couple of opportunities buy Mykyta Shevchenko was more than a match. The sucker punch came deep into stoppage time, having only allowed 3 minutes of added time, Fenerbache equalised in the 96th minute through Simon Kjaer. It was a bitter pill to take for Zorya, who deserved a win only to be controversially denied in added time to added time. Elsewhere in Group A, Feyenord beat Zorya’s next opponent Man Utd 1:0.
Konyaspor 0:1 Shakhtar
Shakhtar got their Europa League campaign off to a winning start on the road, in a dull affair in Konya. Shakhtar were favourties and controlled much of the possession and play but Konyaspor dropped deep and denied Shakhtar any space to exploit. Faccundo Ferreyra finally broke the deadlock in the 76th minute to give Shakhtar the victory. Elsewhere in Group H, Gent and Braga drew 1:1.