Ukraine to prepare for World Cup playoffs with Monchengladbach friendly
KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine will return to the field for the first time since the Russian invasion when it plays a friendly against German club Borussia Monchengladbach on May 11 ahead of a crucial World Cup qualifier.
The Ukrainian Football Association said on Friday it will assemble the team for a training camp in Slovenia from Monday.
Bundesliga club Gladbach said the proceeds from the game would go to charity efforts focused on Ukraine and Ukrainians abroad and that citizens of the country would get free entry.
Ukraine's national team hasn’t played since November and had to postpone its World Cup qualifying playoff against Scotland from March to June 1 because of the war. The winner will face Wales on June 5 for a place at the World Cup in Qatar.
Ukraine didn't provide a squad list for the training camp and friendly. The country's two biggest clubs, Dynamo Kyiv and Shakhtar Donetsk, have been touring Europe playing charity games.
Several of Ukraine's top players such as Manchester City left back Oleksandr Zinchenko and West Ham forward Andriy Yarmolenko will still be involved in their clubs' seasons when the Gladbach game is played.
Ukraine is on a seven-game unbeaten run following its quarterfinal elimination to England at the European Championship last year. However, five of those games were draws and the only wins came against Finland and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
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