With Spain hosting Slovakia, Ukraine have a great opportunity to close the gap on the leading sides in Group C as they welcome Belarus in UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying.
• Aleksandr Martynovich's own goal and a late strike by substitute Serhiy Sydorchuk earned Ukraine a 2-0 away win when they first tackled Belarus in Group C back in October 2014.
• Ukraine's record in eight games against Belarus now reads W4 D3 L1 – or W3 D2 L0 in competitive fixtures.
• Belarus have yet to score in five competitive outings against Ukraine – though two of the matches ended in 0-0 draws.
• The sole Belarusian victory over Ukraine came in a 2002 friendly tournament in Moscow, the late Valentin Belkevich and Aleksandr Hleb getting the goals in a 2-0 success.
• Ukraine defender Olexandr Kucher and midfielder Sydorchuk are both a booking away from a suspension.
• Belarus duo Maksim Bordachev misses out due to a one-match ban. Timofei Kalachou, Aleksandr Martynovich and Igor Shitov are all a booking away from a suspension.
• Ukraine have lost only one of their last eight competitive home games (W6 D1 L1), conceding just twice during that run.
• Belarus's 2-1 win in FYR Macedonia in their last Group C away assignment halted a sequence of ten competitive away matches without a win (D3 L7) since a sensational 1-0 defeat of France in a UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier on 3 September 2010.
Trivia and links
• The four UEFA age-group tournament meetings between these countries have ended in four Ukrainian wins, most recently a 4-1 victory for the Under-17s in 2006.
• Thus far, the Ukrainian team has won seven of the nine meetings between the two nations' clubs – with Belarus's sole success coming in the first encounter as FC Shakhtar Donetsk lost 2-1 at home to FC Ataka-Aura Minsk in the 1996 UEFA Intertoto Cup.
• Players on both sides will have rather fresher memories of FC BATE Borisov's tussles with Shakhtar last season; the Ukrainian outfit triumphed 7-0 away and 5-0 at home in the UEFA Champions League group stage.
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