Monday, 21 October 2019

Dinamo Looking to Improve Poor Record Against Ukrainian Clubs, Away Record Against Shakhtar

October 21, 2019 - In the third round of the Champions League group stage, Dinamo Zagreb will take on Shakhtar Donetsk away at Kharkiv's OSK Metalist Stadion. This will be the first time these two sides have met in a European competition for a decade. The last time they faced each other, the Ukranian side was victorious in both games. 

In 2008, in the final qualifying stage for the group phase of the Champions League, the Ukrainian side triumphed 2-0 in the Donetsk first leg, before a 3-1 success in Zagreb. Back then, Mario Mandžukić, Dejan Lovren, Milan Badelj, and even Igor Bišćan were part of the Dinamo team while Shakhtar was represented by a strong team with the likes of Willian, Fernandinho and Luiz Adriano. In the first leg, Shakhtar already took the lead in the third minute of the game when former Croatia captain and now an assistant coach in the Ukranian club, Darijo Srna, converted the free-kick. The home side doubled the lead through Brazilian Jádson later in the second half. 

In the capital of Croatia, Dinamo struggled again as Brazilian trio Luiz Adriano, Brandão and Willian all scored. After being eliminated from the Champions League, Dinamo managed to qualify for the UEFA Cup. The Croatian side progressed to the group stages of the competition through Slavia Prague, after drawing both games, the first leg at home 0-0, but then qualified through away goals after drawing 3-3 in the Czech Republic. Dinamo was eliminated from the competition after finishing at the bottom of their group, while on the other side, Shakhtar was third in theirs, meaning that they played the UEFA Cup, which they then actually won that season. 

These two sides also played two friendly games in the last three years; the last being played in January 2018 when Dinamo won 1-0 as part of their pre-season. On Tuesday, Shakhtar will be considered favorites despite losing to Manchester City in the first round. The Donetsk club has been defeated in only three of their last 19 home matches in Europe, although they haven’t won any of the last five. 

On the other side, the 2-0 loss against Manchester City in the last round was Dinamo's 13th successive away defeat in the Champions League group stage, since a 2-2 draw at Marseille in November 1999. Furthermore, they have never beaten a Ukrainian opposition in a UEFA competition, home or away. 

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Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Exactly How Close is Srna to Signing with Barcelona?

Darijo Srna yesterday played perhaps his last derby for Shakhtar against Dynamo Kyiv. The former Croatian captain’s side pulled out a 4:3 win, and now it just may be time to look ahead to Spain.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Will Dudu Go Back to Dinamo? Eduardo da Silva Speaks

Eduardo da Silva, our favorite Brazilian-born, Croatian National Team footballer who played for Dinamo Zagreb from 2001-2007, maybe be flirting with a return back to Maksimir…