Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Ukraine v Sweden Euro 2012

Managed a quick getaway from Kiev Airport, once again making use of the free transport available from the airport with match tickets on the day of the game, catching a bus and then managed to catch the majority of the England v France game in the Lucy pub (translates to Lucky in English, the horseshoe gives you a clue).

Olympic Stadium, Kiev, Ukraine


These Ukrainians are in a weight category above that of the Poles, and England had better watch out as if Ukraine do punch above their weight when they meet in Kiev or they could be in serious trouble.

Counterfeit souvenirs were openly on display, as were political protests indicating that Ukraine is at the moment a law unto itself. The countdown to kickoff (coming to a stadium near you soon) was done in Ukrainian. Not unusual you think. In Poland it was done in English.

Olympic Stadium, Kiev for Sweden v Ukraine


Once again the stadium in Kiev was magnificent and with all supporters (with an exception!) in yellow and the blue running track, you knew you were in the Ukraine, except the sky and the fields were upside down.

Once the game settled down and I had worked out that Ukraine were the ones playing in yellow and chants of Sver-gay were replaced with Ooh-cry-eena. Ukraine threatened and like Balotelli, Ibrahomivic showed moments of class that make him look one of the best in the world whilst in the same period showed a lack of application that would not be tolerated in every team.

Shevchenko seems to score every time I see him play and do it was no surprise that their current national hero delivered the equalising goal, and then the winner.

Sweden v Ukraine, Euro 2012


Sweden pushed on towards the end but maybe it was Ooh-cry-eena's "Lucy" night after all.

Whilst both teams battled it out, nothing quite matched the passion shown and heard in the Lucy pub earlier.

© Ross Clegg & Soccerphile.com

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