The Ukrainians were promised millions for the victory over Russia, but this did not help – the Sammelvuo team in the Euro quarterfinals

It will be very difficult against Poland with such a “dirty” game.

The volleyball players of the Russian national team in Gdansk won a strong-willed victory over the Ukrainian team in the first round of the playoffs of the European Championship (3: 1).

As in any sports confrontation between these countries in recent years, politics has gotten into volleyball. But during the match itself, there was not a single moment that politicians and propagandists could catch hold of – the opponents played with mutual respect, completely focusing on volleyball.

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“Russia will behave more nobly, slightly outnumber. Ours will win culturally so that people do not get excruciatingly painful, “the State Duma deputy said rather disgustingly. Vitaly Milonov… Commentator Dmitry Guberniev said that Ukrainian athletes are led by “people without a head” who will get a donut hole – a defeat in three sets.

On the day of the game, the special status of the match was emphasized by the President of the Volleyball Federation of Ukraine Michael Miller… He said that in case of victory over Russia, volleyball players will receive 10 million hryvnia. This is the equivalent of 27 million rubles or 375 thousand dollars.

“In recent years, the Ukrainian volleyball team has been showing good results. Thanks to the support of the corporate partners of the national team, we now have the opportunity to motivate our guys and girls to play not only with words, but also financially, ”the official said.

Yuri Semenyuk

By the way, the Russians were also encouraged on the day of the match, but in absentia. Silver medalists of the Olympics will receive the keys to the BMW X3 after returning home – because of their performance at the Euro, they did not get to the celebration of the Olympians in the Kremlin.


The starting set seemed to be under the control of the Russian national team (14:10), but she fell into the reception on the serves Oleg Plotnitsky… The left-handed captain of the Ukrainians served with such force that the Russians, at best, knocked over themselves, and with attacks from the assigned balls they could not break through the high block – 14:14. They gave the ending to the opponent themselves: two mistakes in a row Egor Klyuki, kick out Pavel Pankov (21:22 – 21:24).

Throughout the season Tuomas Sammelvuo relied on a binder Igor Kobzar, but in the playoffs, Pankov quite unexpectedly appeared on the court, who had previously played only games against Spain and North Macedonia. In them, he crushed opponents with serves and confidently conducted attacks – probably, this convinced the head coach of his readiness for more serious tests.

And in the second batch with the Ukrainians, there was no doubt about it – the Russians showed 60% of the sales. Kluka raged (6/8), found his game in attack and Yaroslav Podlesnykh (4/7) who had problems with this in previous meetings. Dense feed series Dmitry Volkov immediately led to a gap (7: 2), and then the aggression on the serve helped to keep the opponent at a distance.

It is important that the Russians with a block and defense coped with Perugia’s outplayer Plotnitsky. However, as with the diagonal Dmitry Viyetsky, which implemented only 31% of attacks (10/32). There were moments when the opponent kept only on the mistakes of the Russians. And there were plenty of them – 10 and 11 in the first and fourth games, respectively.


The scariest moment of the match for the Russian fans happened at the very beginning of the third set. Kluk and Valentin Golubev rushed for one ball in defense, collided and Yegor collapsed onto the site. Fortunately, the damage to the left elbow was not too serious and everything turned out to be freezing. Otherwise, another side player would have to go into the diagonal.

In general, the Russian diagonal has been haunted by some kind of evil fate lately. Due to injuries, the diagonal did not go to the European Championship Maxim Mikhailov and Victor Poletaev, and already in the course of the tournament was injured Kirill Klets… He is still in the application, but he cannot train. Instead, he flew to Poland Maxim Zhigalov

Yegor Klyuka in attack

One way or another, the damage to Klyuka still affected the course of the match. For a while, Pankov turned him off the game and began to load the Podlesnykh more. He hit the block twice in a row Yuri Semenyuk and made a mistake in the reception, which led to a lag of -4 and the replacement of Pankov with a score of 5: 9. Kobzar appeared noticeably nervous and at first there was a lot of marriage in his programs, but he helped the team to make the chase – 14:14. I also remember the cold-blooded discount at the end (24:22), correcting my mistake in the previous rally when I did not jump onto the block.

The most effective for the Russian national team was the alignment with the server Ivan Yakovlev, who twitched the receivers with his glider, and in the end made an ace by serving in Ilya Kovaleva – 23:21. I must say that the newcomer of the Surgut “Gazprom-Ugra” in this match was not at all impressed, finishing it with a utility index of -1. The Russians also got the decisive point in the third game at Kovalev, closing it with a triple block and plunging the arena into silence. Almost 5 thousand spectators in the stands before the match between Poland and Finland actively supported Ukraine.


The fourth set turned out to be incredibly nervous. There was a lot of chaos and mistakes on the court – none of the teams showed high-quality volleyball. In this situation, break balls from Kluka helped Russia a lot. First, Yegor scored twice on the block, covering Kovalev and Vietskiy (15:14), and then found the diagonal Ukrainians in the hold – 19:16. With these effective actions, Yegor compensated for unconvincing actions in the attack (1/7).

If in previous meetings Kluke had questions about the endings, today he took the lead in difficult moments. He became not only the top scorer of the meeting (21 points), but also the leader in break points (12). For a player who plays in an unfamiliar position, Kluka looks good. And this every time is perceived as a feat.

Today he dragged the team to the quarterfinals, where the opponent will be on a completely different level. And with such a “dirty” Russians it will be very difficult against Poland. Wilfredo Leon and his partners crushed Finland today (25:16, 25:16, 25:14), and before that they won all five matches in the group.

Europe championship. 1/8 finals

Russia – Ukraine – 3: 1 (22:25, 25:16, 25:22, 25:22)

11 September. Gdansk. 4854 viewers
Russia: Podlesnykh (13), Yakovlev (8), Pankov (2), Volkov (14), Kurkaev (6), Klyuka (21) – start; Golubev (libero), Tetyukhin (0), Kobzar (4).
Ukraine: Shchitkov (1), Plotnitsky (11), Semenyuk (14), Viyetsky (11), Kovalev (8), Teremenko (7) – start; Brova (libero), Sidorenko (0), Didenko (0), Ereshchenko (1).
Points – 97:85, serve – 8: 4, attack – 53:39, block – 7:10, errors – 32:29.

Detailed statistics

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