Our football match prediction:
As expected, Maritimo defeated Botev Plovdiv of Bulgaria in round 3 of the Europa League qualifiers, but they face an uphill task in the tie against star-studded Dynamo Kiev. The Primeira Liga side, though, are tough to beat at home and they are definitely capable of grabbing something from Thursday’s football match against the Ukrainian side. Summer signing Rodrigo Pinho found the net in the 2-0 win over Botev Plovdiv, meaning that the opposition defenders should have the Brazilian attacker at bay in the first leg. Dynamo Kiev were more than unfortunate not to make it to the Champions League play-offs, with the team losing to Young Boys on away goal rule, but they have good chance of booking their place in the Europa League group stages. A close encounter appears on the cards and we predict that the two teams are going to play out a low-scoring draw at Estadio dos Barreiros.
Highlighted Player (Artem Kravets):
Artem Kravets is a towering striker born on 3 June 1989 in Dniprodzerzhynsk, and he is a player who has yet to realise his full potential. Coming through the youth ranks at Dynamo Kiev, the forward never quite managed to nail down a regular starting berth in Ukraine’s most famous club, but he has rather searched for form during loan spells with Arsenal Kiev and Stuttgart. The return of 15 goals in 24 league appearances for Dynamo during the 2014/2015 season saw Kravets eventually get a chance to prove his worth in German Bundesliga, but the loan stint with VFB Stuttgart did not go according to plan. Despite the lack of action on club level, the striker was important member of the Ukraine team that secured their place at the Euro 2016 finals, scoring 3 goals in eight qualifiers, and he has since also profited from Yevhen Seleznyov’s decision to move to Russia that cost him a place in the national team.
Highlighted Team (Dynamo Kyiv):
The most successful football club in Ukraine, Dynamo Kyiv has not been relegated to a lower division since its inception in 1927. First founded as a part of the Soviet Dynamo Sports Society, Dynamo Kyiv became a member of the Ukrainian Premier League after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Over the course of its rich history, Dynamo Kyiv has won the total of 28 national titles, 13 of which came during the Soviet era. In addition, Dynamo Kyiv won 20 national cup competitions, while it also grabbed 3 major continental trophies, including two UEFA Cup Winners’ Cups. Oleh Blokhin remains to this date the most successful player of the Ukrainian giants with his 266 goals scored for the Kyiv club. However, current Ukraine national team head coach Andriy Shevchenko is arguably the most recognisable player in Dynamo Kyiv history. Former Milan and Chelsea star scored the total of 124 goal during his two stints with the Ukrainian club.