The official website for European football

Ukraine out to avenge France defeat

Published: Sunday 8 January 2012, 19.00CET
Ukraine have never beaten France but will certainly be aiming for better than the 4-1 defeat dished out by Les Bleus when these Group D rivals last met in Donetsk in 2011.

rate galleryrate photo
  • loading...
Published: Sunday 8 January 2012, 19.00CET

Ukraine out to avenge France defeat

Ukraine have never beaten France but will certainly be aiming for better than the 4-1 defeat dished out by Les Bleus when these Group D rivals last met in Donetsk in 2011.

UEFA EURO 2012 co-hosts Ukraine are seeking a first win against France but Laurent Blanc's side will have other ideas given their emphatic friendly win in Donetsk last year.

• While Samir Nasri's strike earned France a 1-1 draw against England on matchday one, Ukraine came from a goal down against Sweden, Andriy Shevchenko's double (55, 62) securing a 2-1 win in a raucous Kyiv atmosphere.

Head-to-head record
• Ukraine's record in six games against France does not make for encouraging reading: W0 D3 L3. The countries' four UEFA European Championship qualifying meetings ended in three draws and a win for France.

• The sides first met in a 0-0 UEFA EURO 2000 qualifying draw in France on 27 March 1999, with the return fixture on 4 September the same year also ending goalless. France coach Blanc played in both fixtures.

• France won the next two meetings – 1-0 in a friendly on 6 June 2004 and 2-0 in a 2 June 2007 UEFA EURO 2008 qualifier. The teams drew 2-2 in Kyiv in November 2007, Andriy Voronin and Shevchenko both on target for the home side.

• Their most recent encounter came at the Donbass Arena in a friendly on 6 June 2011, which France won 4-1.

Selected previous meetings
6 June 2011: Ukraine 1-4 France (Tymoshchuk 53; Gameiro 58, Martin 87 90+2, Kaboul 89) – Donbass Arena, Donetsk, friendly
Pyatov, Kobin, Ishchenko, Kucher (Khacheridi 33), Shevchuk, Gusev (Khudobyak 74), Tymoshchuk, Rotan, Nazarenko (Kozhanov 62), Voronin (Milevskiy 61), Dević (Seleznyov 69).
Mandanda, Réveillère, Kaboul, Sakho (Abidal 76), Evra, M'Vila, Cabaye (Martin 76), Matuidi (Diaby 76), Rémy (Malouda 65), Gameiro (Benzema 65), Menez (Ribéry 65).

• France's first game at the Donbass Arena was decided with the help of three goals by debutants; substitute Marvin Martin scoring either side of a Younes Kaboul effort.

21 November 2007: Ukraine 2-2 France (Voronin 14, Shevchenko 46; Henry 20, Govou 34) – NSK Olympiyskiy, Kyiv, UEFA EURO 2008 qualifier
Pyatov, Vashchuk, Grytsay, Romanchuk (Yezerskiy 81), Fedorov, Tymoshchuk, Gusev (Milevskiy 90+1), Rotan, Gai, Shevchenko, Voronin (Shelayev 85).
France: Frey, Clerc, Gallas, Thuram, Abidal, Ribéry (Ben Arfa 89), Makelele, L Diarra, Govou, Henry, Benzema (Nasri 46).

• It took until their fifth meeting with Les Bleus for Ukraine to score a goal, Andriy Voronin making the breakthrough against Raymond Domenech's side in Kyiv. It was France's 700th senior game, and the last of Oleh Blokhin's first spell as Ukraine coach.

Form guide
• France headed home at the end of the group stage at the 2010 World Cup and at UEFA EURO 2008. Their matchday one draw means they have not won in eight tournament matches since beating Portugal in the 2006 World Cup semi-finals.

• Ukraine's only previous experience of a final tournament came at the 2006 World Cup where they made it through the group stage, recovering from a 4-0 opening loss to Spain with wins against Saudi Arabia (4-0) and Tunisia (1-0). They then beat Switzerland on penalties following a goalless draw in the round of 16, but lost 3-0 to Italy in the quarter-finals.

Team ties
• France's Franck Ribéry and Ukraine's Anatoliy Tymoshchuk have been team-mates at FC Bayern München since the 2009/10 season. They won a domestic double together in that campaign.

• Ukraine's Andriy Shevchenko played alongside Florent Malouda at Chelsea FC in 2007/08.

• After losing 1-0 in Paris with the Soviet Union in October 1972, Ukraine coach Blokhin gained revenge by scoring the opening goal in a 2-0 victory against France in the return World Cup qualifier in Moscow in May 1973. Blokhin appeared later as a substitute in the USSR team that held France 1-1 in the group stage at the 1986 World Cup.

• Philippe Mexès has played in two UEFA Champions League defeats for AS Roma in Donetsk: a 3-0 round of 16 defeat at the Donbass Arena on 8 March 2011 and a 1-0 group stage loss at the old RSC Olympiyskiy Stadium on 22 November 2006.

• Steve Mandanda and Mathieu Valbuena were in the Olympique de Marseille squad beaten 2-0 at Shakhtar in the 2008/09 UEFA Cup quarter-finals.

• Yohan Cabaye and Mathieu Debuchy played in the LOSC Lille Métropole side that held Shakhtar to a 0-0 draw in Donetsk in the 2005/06 UEFA Cup round of 32.

Competition format
• If two or more teams are equal on points on completion of the group matches, the following criteria are applied to determine the rankings:
a) Higher number of points obtained in the matches played between the teams in question;
b) Superior goal difference resulting from the matches played between the teams in question;
c) Higher number of goals scored in the matches played between the teams in question;
d) If, after having applied criteria a) to c), two teams still have an equal ranking, criteria a) to c) are reapplied exclusively to the matches between the two teams in question to determine the final rankings of the two teams. If this procedure does not lead to a decision, criteria e) to i) apply in the order given;
e) superior goal difference in all group matches;
f) higher number of goals scored in all group matches;
g) position in the UEFA national team coefficient ranking system (see annex I, paragraph 1.2.2);
h) fair play conduct of the teams (final tournament);
i) drawing of lots.

• The Group D coefficients are as follows:
England 33.563
Sweden 31.675
France 30.508
Ukraine 28.029

• If two teams which have the same number of points, the same number of goals scored and conceded play their last group match against each other and are still equal at the end of that match, the ranking of the two teams in question is determined by kicks from the penalty mark provided no other teams within the group have the same number of points on completion of all group matches. Should more than two teams have the same number of points, the criteria listed under paragraph 8.07 apply.

Last updated: 05/12/13 4.45CET