U21. Oleksandriya vs Shakhtar: match report

In a match of the 14th round of the Youth Championship, Shakhtar U21 played Oleksandriya away.

U21 Champioship. 14th round. November 6, 2015. Oleksandriya. Olimp SC. 6C 

Oleksandriya U21 2-0 (1-0) Shakhtar Donetsk U21 

Goals: 1-0 Hryhorenko (33’), 2-0 Hrytsuk (72’)

Oleksandriya: Novak, Imerekov, Tsyrulnev, Koidan (c), Hryhorenko, Leonov (Ponomarenko, 81’), Elsukov, Huskov (Pohranychnyi, 87), Hrytsuk (Khomichev, 77’), Besarab, Hrubyi

Unused subs: Bubentsov, Hnyp, Makohon, Ardelyan

Head coach: Andriy Kuptsov

Shakhtar: Hrytsenko, Sahaidak, Kacharaba, Matviyenko, Steflyuk (Hrachov, 73’), Shyshka (c), Habelok, Zubkov, Horbunov (Bugai, 84’), Ivanov (Kuksenko, 56’) Boryachuk

Unused subs: Kudryk, Sahutkin, Avahimyan, Sukhanynskyi

Head coach: Miguel Cardoso
Coaches: Anatoliy Skyrchuk, Igor Duljaj

Referee: Anatoliy Zhabchenko (Khmelnytskyi)

Booked: Imerekov (59’)

Before the match

The Pitmen, being the undisputed leaders in the U21 championship, met with the-bottom-of-the-table side Oleksandriya, who were sitting in the 10th spot. The match of the first round in Schaslyve brought Shakhtar reserve team a hard-fought win (1-0). Today, in the starting lineup appeared after a break the first-team defender Mykola Matviienko and midfielder Oleksandr Zubkov. Andriy Korobenko was sitting out the game. Vasyl Sahaidak took to the pitch in the right-back role. The rest of the team of Miguel Cardoso was unchanged.

First half

The visitors started the match more actively, earning two corner kicks, being able to open the scoring as early as in the tenth minute, when following a Serhiy Horbunov pass from the right, Andriy Boryachuk took a one-touch shot from close range just to see his effort hit the keeper. After another 10 minutes, Mykhailo Shyshka could have scored following a corner, but his header was barely saved by Oleksandriya keeper. Shortly afterwards, the hosts produced a very dangerous attack as Shakhtar defenders twice cleared the ball virtually from the goal line.

At the end of the thirty minutes, the Donetsk team wasted two more chances: Horbunov entered the penalty area on the left, levelled with the goalkeeper, though missed the target, and shortly afterwards Boryachuk failed to get on end of a Zubkov cross in front of the empty goal while challenging a defender. But after 33 minutes, a counterattack by Oleksandriya was successful: Hryhorenko got through down the right wing and beat Yevhen Hrytsenko to make it 1-0. During the next attacking move, Shakhtar goalkeeper cleared a point-blank header. The teams left for the half-time break with the hosts having a narrow lead.

Second half

At the start of the second half, Oleksandriya wasted another chance with the ball whizzing inches off the post following Hrytsuk’s effort from outside the box. Later on, numerous challenges for the ball followed with the keepers having little work to do. The Pitmen were trying to establish combinational performance, with the hosts responding with fast counterattacks. One of them proved fruitful in the 72nd minute, with Hrytsuk sending the ball into the bottom corner to make it 2-0.

Donetsk stepped up the pace in the hope of revenge, but their actions basically reduced to individual performance and runs into the penalty area. It was ineffective though, with Oleksandriya  securing the winning score. The team of Miguel Cardoso suffered their second defeat of the season, though Donetsk still continue to top the league table. Shakhtar U21 will play their next game in a fortnight’s time at home against Volyn.

Miguel Cardoso, head coach of Shakhtar U21:

- We lost for different reasons. Primarily because the opponents were better than us today. There are certain things that form the foundation of football – being both the ability to win individual challenges and the fighting qualities. In this respect, we failed to be Oleksandriya’s match. Although we got off to a pretty good start and created a few scoring chances in the opening 15 minutes. Obviously, this relaxed the guys. There wasn’t enough dedication in front, and then the game has become even more difficult for us. Perhaps unfairly we were behind after the first half, plus after the break, the opponents began operating more vigorously owing to the second goal. We were put under pressure in each section of the field, with precision passes often failing because of the hummocky field. In general, it was a very difficult game for us. 

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