Euro 2012 alternative team guide: Ukraine
10 word description: Hosts hoping home advantage will help overcome patchy recent form.
Coach: Oleg Blokhin
The former Dynamo Kiev and Soviet Union striker is back for a second stint in charge of Ukraine. He enjoyed success between 2003 and 2007, albeit with a very good generation at his disposal. Having stepped aside when he failed to qualify for Euro 2008, he returned in 2011 just in time to give Euro 2012 a crack.
Star man: Andriy Yarmolenko
Shevchenko remains the star name, but at 35 years old and suffering chronic knee injuries, OTP is tipping another Andriy to have a greater impact on the tournament. Yarmolenko, aged 22, is Dynamo Kiev’s number 9. He’s got a decent scoring ratio at international level and looks set to be a key figure in their squad for the next decade.
Prem connections: Andriy Shevchenko (ex-Chelsea) and Andriy Voronin (ex-Liverpool).
Comedy name potential: Bohdan Butko, Yevhen Khacheridi.
Fun country fact: The Arsenalna metro station in Kiev is the world’s deepest at 105metres underground.
Anthem / rating: Shche ne vmerla Ukraina / 6 out of 10
This version doesn’t go anywhere fast, but apparently the current version is only six lines long as the lyrics that hint at invading Russian territory are now considered slightly un-PC.