Our football match prediction:
Saturday’s football match at Oblasny SportKomplex Metalist pits together Ukraine and Turkey, the two teams who are level on points in Group I. There will be fireworks when the two teams face each other in Kharkiv and, no doubt, both sides are eager to pick up all three points from the game. Ukraine did well to bounce back from a 1-0 loss to Croatia, with the team beating Finland on the road and a victory over Turkey could see them regain their spot in top two. The Turks, on the other hand, are eyeing their fourth consecutive triumph in the process, but beating Ukraine on the road is easier said than done. Andriy Yarmolenko, who is on the verge of signing for Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund, will be the man to watch in the home team. The Ukrainians are a real force to be reckoned with at home and we are tempted to put our money on Andriy Shevchenko’s charges.
Highlighted Player (Yaroslav Rakitskiy):
Yaroslav Rakitskiy is a professional footballer who was born on 3 August, 1989. Rakitskiy made his Shakhtar Donetsk debut on 31 August, 2009 in a 3-1 win over Zorya. It has to be noted that he came as a substitute in the second half of the match. The Ukrainian footballer who plays as both centre and a left back, made 24 league appearances for the club in the 2009/2010 season and he has been playing for the Miners ever since. Rakitskiy made his Ukraine debut on 10 October, 2009 in a 1-0 win over England in a World Cup qualifying match. Just four days later he scored his first goal for the Ukrainian national team, finding the net in a thrilling 6-0 victory over Andorra. Yaroslav made two appearances for Ukraine at the 2016 European Championship finals in France, in the opener against Germany (0-2) and in a 2-0 loss to Northern Ireland. His contract with Shakhtar Donetsk expires on 30 June, 2018.
Highlighted Team (Turkey):
Present on the international stage since 1923, Turkey only started showing some promise during the 70’s, but they had to wait until the turn of the century to place themselves on the map. While they lost all three fixtures at their first ever European Championship finals in 1996, they fared much better four years later, reaching the last eight in Netherlands and Belgium. Milli Takim were able to build on that result as they went on to reach the podium at the 2002 World Cup finals in South Korea and Japan, while also finishing third at the 2003 Confederations Cup and making it to the semi-finals at the Euro 2008. Rustu Recber, Hakan Sukur and Emre Belezoglu were important parts of the country’s most successful generation, but the one including Arda Turan, Selcuk Inan, Burak Yilmaz and Hakan Calhanoglu is threatening to surpass their achievements. As the Turkish Super Lig continues the get stronger, the national team follows, and we should expect some big result from Milli Takim in the near future.