SHAKHTAR DONETSK beat RB Leipzig 4-1 in their first Champions League game of the season – despite missing SIX MONTHS of football due to the war in Ukraine.
Due to the ongoing conflict with Russia, football in the country was suspended for 254 days earlier this year.
Ukraine’s domestic league returned just two weeks ago, with Shakhtar taking seven points from their first three games.
Due to the devastation in their home country, the club is currently playing its home games in Warsaw, Poland.
They came to the clash with Leipzig in Germany as the overwhelming favorite to beat them, but the visitors put on a stunning performance to destroy the Bundesliga team.
And it sparked emotional scenes in the closing stages when the political situation in Ukraine drew a jubilant reaction from the players.
Ukraine international Shved scored after a fatal mistake by Leipzig keeper Peter Gulacsi after 15 minutes.
Mohamed Simakan equalized for the hosts in the 12th minute of the second half but just 60 seconds later, Shved scored again to restore Shakhtar’s lead.
Arsenal transfer target Mykhailo Mudryk then added a third before Lassina Traore sealed the win with five minutes remaining.
In response to the stunning victory Adam Crafton from The Athletic said: “There have been players on the pitch who have lost close relatives in the last three months and who have close friends on the front line.
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“The performance here was tactical and technical, but mostly psychological.”
The win means Shakhtar are top of Group F after the first round.
Next up for the Ukrainian side is a clash with Celtic in Poland next week.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid, who beat Celtic 3-0 on Tuesday night, host Leipzig.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6163701/shakhtar-donetsk-rb-leipzig-champions-league-russia-war-ukraine/ The emotional Shakhtar beats RB Leipzig in the Champions League opener despite missing SIX MONTHS due to the Russian war in Ukraine