Our prediction for this Nations League match:
Last time Ukraine played the Czechs was 6 years ago when the game finished a goalless draw. That was the second ever match they played against each other. In the first game, the Czechs defeated Ukraine 4:0. Neither team was a contestant in this years World Cup so the players will look forward to some official national team games. Their form in the last ten games is quite similar. The Czechs have managed to get 6 wins and were defeated 4 times, while the Ukrainians also got 6 wins, but only two defeats and two draws. They both kept three clean sheets and both failed to score on three occasions. Key players ahead of the clash at the Miroslav Valenty stadium in Uherské Hradiště will be Michael Krmencik and Vladimir Darida for the Czech Republic and Andriy Yarmolenko and Yevhen Konoplyanka for Ukraine. This will be a tight game and it’s likely to be a draw.
Highlighted Player (Vladimir Darida):
Born in Sokolov on 8 August 1990, Vladimir Darida is yet another Czech Republic footballer who has made a name for himself in German Bundesliga, although not before leaving his mark on the domestic competition. The highly rated midfielder, who can successfully cover a number of positions in the middle of the park, enjoyed several successful years at Viktoria Plzen, making no fewer than 28 appearances in European competitions, before deciding to leave for SC Freiburg.
Darida performed so well in his first two Bundesliga campaign that he was purchased by Hertha Berlin when his previous employers got relegated to the second division, and he in turn helped the Olympiastadion outfit enjoy a thoroughly impressive campaign.
Darida was a surprise inclusion to the Czech Republic squad for the Euro 2012 finals, but there were no surprises when he played a key role to help Repre qualify for the Euro 2016 tournament. He impressed playing in a more advanced role in the absence of Tomas Rosicky, and he has already earned more than 30 caps for the national team.
Highlighted Team (Ukraine):
After the country had gained independence from the Soviet Union, Ukraine played their first international match in 1992, and they have come a long way since. Zbirna have only once played at the World Cup finals so far, and they did really well to reach the quarter-finals in 2006, while they co-hosted the Euro 2012 with Poland, albeit failing to get past the group stage.
The generation that secured qualification for the Euro 2016 finals in France is arguably the most talented ever, with Yevhen Konoplyanka, Andriy Yarmolenko, Ruslan Rotan and Roman Zozulya the leading players, but plenty more talent present in Mikhail Fomenko’s squad.
Similar to the trademark style of former Soviet teams, Ukraine bases their tactics on rock-solid defence and swift counter-attacks, but it has to be noted that Zbirna possess a lot more technical skills and attacking potential than most other former Russian republics. Everything suggests that the most successful period in the history of the national team is ahead of them.