Ukraine take on Turkey in Kharkiv on Saturday evening, with the duo looking to make up ground on those ahead of them in the Group I World Cup qualifying standings. The two teams are both locked on 11 points, just two points behind group leaders Croatia.
World Cup 2018 Qualifying – Metalist Stadium, Kharkiv – Saturday 2nd September – 19:45 UK Time
Best Odd of: 13/10 at Ladbrokes
Best Odd of: 85/40 at BetVictor
Best Odd of: 27/10 at 10Bet
Having already played out a 2-2 draw back in October, both the Ukraine and Turkey will be hunting three points this weekend. Ukraine lost all three of their group fixtures at Euro 2016, while Turkey also struggled to find their best form in France. With both teams in danger of missing out on qualification for the World Cup finals in Russia next year, the duo is under pressure to deliver on Saturday.
Ukraine Team News & Form
Former AC Milan star Andriy Shevchenko was appointed as Ukraine Head Coach following Euro 2016, with their record goalscorer having led the team to three wins from six in qualifying to date. Despite having suffered just one defeat in this time, a lack of goals has left Ukraine in fourth place in the standings.
However, an impressive away win in Finland last time around showed signs of improvement for Ukraine, with another win potentially significantly enhancing their chances of qualifying. Having just signed for Borussia Dortmund, Andriy Yarmolenko will be one of the biggest threats to the Turkish defence, alongside the likes of Yevhen Konoplyanka and Artem Kravets.
Turkey Team News & Form
As for the visitors, a dominant win in Kosovo last time around means that Turkey are still in with a chance of making the finals next year, however a positive result in the Ukraine is certainly required. Manager Mircea Lucescu will take charge of his first match for the national team having taken over from Fatih Terim, with the former Galatasaray boss having named a number of his former players in the Turkish squad for this match. Having signed for Celta Vigo over the summer, Emre Mor could well line up for the away side, alongside experienced players including Arda Turan, Nuri Şahin and Hakan Çalhanoğlu.
Head to Head
The Ukraine have only ever won just one match against Turkey, coming back in 2004. The Urkaine have got the better of Saturday’s opponents over recent years, winning the three previous fixtures before October’s meeting in Turkey, with an aggregate score of 6-0. However, a 2-2 draw last time around means that this could well be a match that is separated by just a goal or two.
Betting Odds and Predictions
In terms of betting markets surrounding this match, simply backing a home win for Shevchenko’s men is the first appealing option, with odds of 13/10 found at Ladbrokes. Elsewhere, for those predicting a win for the away side this weekend, the same bookmakers offer attractive odds of 13/5, perfect for those looking to take a risk.
Meanwhile, with two teams having played out a four goal thriller last time around, betting on there being over 2.5 goals is again a bet worth considering, with odds of 7/5 available at William Hill.
Top Betting Tip
Our top betting tip for this match is to back both teams to score, with both sides having struggled to earn clean sheets throughout qualifying. Best odds of 1/1 are available at bookmakers 10Bet.