Monday, August 26, 2013

14/8/13 Ukraine 2 Israel 0

In the morning we had been on the beach on another scorching day in Kyiv, but as the day progressed the clouds started to gather and it looked like we might get some rain. However, when we met Sid at Krila it was still sunny and it looked like we might get away without getting a soaking. How wrong we were though. The skies opened and we were liked drowned rats by the time we got there.

Out on the pitch there was clearly a gulf in the difference in class between the two teams. Ukraine were playing a neat passing game and the Israelis were struggling to match them. Ukraine's next game will be against England in a crucial World Cup qualifier, it probably will be one of the best chances they will have of getting one over on England after their disappointment in the Euros. They will have to be less wasteful in front of goal though as they should have had a clear lead when Rotan broke the deadlock on 29 minutes.

It is was just a friendly though and the frequent outbreaks of torrential rain weren't exactly helping. We were reminded of the fact that it was a friendly as the second half started, as Ukraine took off most of their more established players. Off went Tymoshchuk, Devic and the rising star, Konoplyanka to be replaced by a fresher bunch of faces. Things didn't change that much though as Ukraine continued to pass Israel to death. Nevertheless, a well worked move by the visitors on 65 minutes when they seemed to have cleverly scored, but the linesman's flag was up. This seemed to wake the hosts up and after a wave of attacks that were as relentless as the rain Selezinov scored on 71 to give Ukraine a two goal lead. The foot was then taken off the gas and Ukraine closed out the game to register a 2-0 win.

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