UPL PREDICTOR MATCHDAY 9
The UPL returned after the international break in subdued style. Not many goals were scored as Shakhtar reasserted their lead at the top of the table. They defeated their second placed rivals Oleksandriya whilst Dynamo continued their winless streak with a 1-1 draw away against Zorya Luhansk. Dynamo now sit 7 points behind Shakhtar but have a midweek game in hand to play next Wednesday. Arsenal Kyiv remain at the bottom of the league after losing to Desna Chernihiv, whilst Mariupol demolished Olimpik Donetsk 3-1, potentially picking up some of last season’s form that had been lost during their Europa League exploits earlier in the season.
European action returned in the midweek with Shakhtar, Dynamo and Vorskla all in action. Shakhtar came from behind twice to secure a point at home against Hoffenheim. A superb Maycon strike helped make the game 2-2. Dynamo began at home to Astana, a game they should have won but once more were unable to secure the three points and had to settle for just one. When will the Dynamo crisis end? Vorskla travelled to London to visit the Emirates Stadium and left with their heads held high. A crowd of 400 Ukrainians cheered them on from the stands, who were ecstatic when Vorskla’s two goals went in. Regardless of the 4-2 result, Vorskla did not end up embarrassing themselves and will retain some confidence going into their game this weekend!
Andrew Todos of Zorya Londonsk Weekly will be making predictions for every UPL game this season, against a variety of guests.
Our ninth guest of the 2018 – 19 season is journalist and founder of Legioners.ua, the popular Ukrainian football news Instagram and Facebook pages, Bohdan Sagash. Bohdan hails from Lviv where he supports his local side Karpaty alongside Dynamo Kyiv. His favoured European side is Real Madrid. He has been following football since the ‘German’ summer of 2006, the one and only time Ukraine qualified for the World Cup!
In conjunction to his work as a journalist, where he regularly produces content for Legioners.ua we decided to ask Bohdan about what inspired and motivated him to start his social media accounts about Ukrainian foreign based players. He told us that it was actually his friend, Mykola, who came up with the name for the project. ‘Since then the Legioners.ua pages have grown from strength to strength. There are now four team members and we strive to produce interesting and engaging content for our followers every day!’
In response to our question asking whether he ever thought his pages would become as popular as they are today, Bohdan played down any successes for the time being. ‘I can’t really say that is page is that popular and we are still searching for a larger target audience.’ However, Bohdan will take good stead from the fact that the original version of his Legioners.ua page accumulated over 25,000 followers ahead of the account being blocked and then deleted by Instagram. To rebuild the Instagram page back up from scratch shows great commitment and dedication to the cause – delivering interesting and unique content for Ukrainian football supporting fans.
Further to mentioning the original version of the Legioners.ua social pages, we wanted to know why Instagram decided to ban it and leave Bohdan and his social team to start again. ‘Instagram didn’t tell us the exact reasoning behind the account removal, but it’s more than likely down to copyright reasons relating to video highlights. However, as the rebuilding process from this devastating decision continues, Bohdan and his team are in the process of releasing a Legioners.ua website.
We enquired with Bohdan about what people can expect from the new online venture once it launches. He anticipates ‘We will be publishing exclusive interviews and videos, and in conjunction with this we will be starting to lots of different competitions via our Instagram page too.’
|Bohdan with Oleksandr Zinchenko|
In his capacity as a journalist, Bohdan attempts to regularly attend games. He was recently at the Ukraine v Slovakia Nations League game that was played behind closed doors. We asked him what he thought of the game and how he rated Ukraine’s overall team playing style. ‘The match itself was relatively tense, but I am happy that the team got the 3 points. I’m not going to single any one out for personal praise as all the players played great. It is without a doubt clear to see that Ukraine’s style and play is changing and the players are adjusting to it accordingly.’
Furthermore, as Legioners.ua has such a pronounced focus on Ukrainian players plying their trade abroad, we could not pass up on the opportunity to ask Bohdan his thoughts on the most inform footballer playing on foreign shores. ‘I believe that every foreign based Ukrainian player brings their own benefits to their respected clubs.’
In addition to this, we asked Bohdan to tell us which players he thought would have the best and most consistent seasons? ‘In my opinion, Malinovskiy, Yaremchuk and Seleznyov will persist with their high quality performances. Yarmolenko is still adapting to his new side and requires time regardless of his double against Everton. It’s also worth remembering Konoplyanka and Zinchenko, both are playing at the highest level and for top clubs in their league but they desperately need more playing time!’
BOHDAN’S SOCIAL LINKS:
A correct result (WIN / DRAW/ DEFEAT) is worth 10 points. The exact score earns an extra 40 points.
Mariupol v Oleksandriya
Todos’ prediction: Oleksandriya’s form has dipped slightly in recent games but I feel they will likely regain some of it in this game. Mariupol are not easy opposition but they have been awful at the back this season so goals will be conceded. 1-2
Bohdan’s prediction: Bohdan is going for the all score draw. 1-1
RESULT: 1-0: FOMIN (8′)
FC Lviv v Karpaty Lviv
Todos’ prediction: Karpaty are the most inconsistent team around. Every week their performances are wholly unpredictable and will probably still be feeling deflated after last week’s last minute loss to Vorskla. Narrow game with FC Lviv giving their counterparts a good game. 1-1
Bohdan’s prediction: Bohdan is backing his hometown club, Karpaty to grab a win against their city rivals. 1-2
RESULT: 1-1: DUARTE (78′) / MYAKUSHKO (74′)
Arsenal Kyiv v Olimpik Donetsk
Todos’ prediction: Arsenal Kyiv are bottom of the table. Whilst they’re recent performances have improved, they are unable to get themselves ahead in games. Olimpik have been inconsistent so far this season, notably being let down by their defence which has been relatively solid over recent past seasons. Olimpik will edge the game as they possess a more experienced UPL squad. 1-2
Bohdan’s prediction: A narrow win for Olimpik. 0-1
RESULT: 1-3: HRYN (58′) / VAKULENKO (16′) , GRISHKO (64′) , DEHTYAREV (82′)
Dynamo Kyiv v Desna Chernihiv
Todos’ prediction: Dynamo have been so poor recently but I just don’t believe this rut can go on any further. Desna are not the most formidable opposition and this fixture could be coming at the perfect time for Khatskevich. Get a win and relieve a miniscule amount of pressure. 2-0
Bohdan’s prediction: Dynamo to edge this game out. Just. 1-0
RESULT: 4-0: BURDA (45+1′) , VERBIC (67′) , KEDZIORA (74′) , TSYHANKOV (87′)
Shakhtar Donetsk v Chornomorets Odesa
Todos’ prediction: Chornomorets have been doing a lot better than expected this season, however regardless of their numerous recent good performances, Shakhtar will be ready to inflict serious damage. Slightly disappointed with their UCL result, they will be ready to take it out on the Odesa defence.4-0
Bohdan’s prediction: Shakhtar to win this game comfortably. 2-0
RESULT: 3-0: MORAES (57′) , TRUBOCHKIN OG (63′) , TAISON (82′)
Vorskla Poltava v Zorya Luhansk
Todos’ prediction: I was initially going to side with Zorya in this fixture but after Vorskla’s display at the Emirates and two well taken goals, Vorskla will be buoyed by their midweek display and will give Zorya a game. 1-1
Bohdan’s prediction:Bohdan predicts a UEL hangover for the Poltava side. 0-1
RESULT: 2-1: REBENOK (65′) , PRIYMA (90+2′) / KARAVAYEV (70′)
MATCHDAY 9 – H2H WINNER: ANDREW TODOS
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Total scores after week 9
Todos v Guests