Ukraine vs Turkey Betting Tips, Prediction, Preview, H2H & Lineups
Saturday’s 2018 World Cup qualifier at the “Oblasny SportKomplex Metalist” pits together Ukraine and Turkey, the two teams who are level on points in Group I. There will be fireworks when both sides face each other in Kharkiv and, unquestionably, Ukraine and Turkey are keen to pick up all three points from the game. Otherwise this could be a certain blow over their World Cup hopes, especially if someone losses here and in the meantime other Group I favourites (Croatia and Iceland) take their games.
H2H History: Ukraine vs Turkey
2018 World Cup Qualifying: Ukraine vs Turkey 02.09.2017
After 3 victories, 2 draws and 1 defeat, Ukraine is currently fourth having 11 points earned in six rounds. In the last match Ukraine won away against Finland (1-2), which revived their enthusiasm, since they have previously lost to Croatia. In the meantime Ukraine has won in 3 of their last 4 games.
Likewise Ukraine, guests from Turkey also suffered a devastating Euro 2016 campaign as they went out at the group stages. Their tournament was summed up by the booing of captain and star player Arda Turan, who was then left out of a few squads after that. There were a lot of changes in the Turkish squad since then and Fatih Terim was replaced by experienced Romanian Mircea Lucescu, who called back Arda Turan from Barcelona.
Last time out Turkey won over newcomers Kosovo (1:4 away) and that extended their streak to five games without losing. Nevertheless, they have enjoyed a very kind run of fixtures against sides like Kosovo (twice), Finland, Moldova. In fact, away from home they have won just one of their four matches since the Euro 2016 finals, losing 2:0 to Iceland in that number.
Match Preview: Team News, Squads and Missing Players
Ukraine have won three, drawn one, and lost one of their five home games since France last summer, conceding just two goals in the process. Legendary AC Milan striker Andriy Shevchenko has a difficult task to refresh the squad but to qualify the team to Russia as well. That happens with a fusion between experienced players and some new faces, who play in Ukrainian league mostly.
Defenders Yaroslav Rakitskiy, Oleksandr Kucher, Artem Fedetskyi as well as striker Yevhen Seleznyov are among the most noticeable absentees in current Ukrainian setup.
On the other side we have Turkey led by Mircea Lucescu who has serious experience in Ukrainian football. Most of you probably know that Lucescu led Shakhtar Donetsk in period 2004–2016. Now Lucescu must stop Ukraine at home turf and he looks as the one who has greatest knowledge how to accomplish that goal.
Besides Arda Turan who is back in the squad, Lucescu has other experienced players who are back in contention. Unfortunately, striker Burak Yilmaz is suspended and will miss out, but Besiktas’ forward Cenk Tosun will most likely lead Turkish attack against Ukraine.
Ukraine vs Turkey Prediction and Betting Tips
Both sides need to win on Saturday and this adds more pressure into both sides. Not to mention that when they have a direct encounter in Kharkiv, their opponents will have games against both Group I underdogs. With Ukraine and Turkey realistically being in need of winning the whole set of points, an open game could ensue goals by both sides. Indeed, both teams will be keen to take all three points on Saturday and our betting pick goes on “Both teams to score – Yes”.
Possible Lineups of Ukraine and Turkey
Venue: “OSK Metalist Stadion”, Kharkiv.
Referee: David Fernandez Borbalan from Spain.
Ukraine: Andriy Pyatov – Bogdan Butko, Yevhen Khacheridi, Ivan Ordets, Mykola Matvienko – Taras Stepanenko, Ruslan Malinovsky – Andriy Yarmolenko, Viktor Kovalenko, Yevhen Konoplyanka – Artem Kravets. (4-2-3-1)
Turkey: Volkan Babacan – Caner Erkin, Ömer Toprak, Serdar Aziz, Sener Özbayrakli – Tolga Cigerci, Oguzhan Özyakup – Arda Turan, Hakan Calhanoglu, Emre Mor – Cenk Tosun. (4-2-3-1)