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Ukraine started their football World Cup 2018 qualifying campaign with a 1-1 home draw with Iceland at the Olympic stadium in Kiev.

Iceland found the lead on Monday night via a strike from Alfred Finnbogason in the fifth minute. Andriy Yarmolenko scored the equaliser for Ukraine in the 49th minute.

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mario_gomezGermany and Poland registered contrasting 1-0 wins against Northern Ireland and Ukraine respectively to finish on 7 points each in Group C of the European Championships with the Germans narrowly condemning the Poles to second place courtesy of a marginally better goal difference 3 to 2.

Perhaps more crucially was the fact that an inspired showing in goal by Northern Ireland keeper Michael McGovern limited Germany to just a solitary goal, leaving the minnows with a goal difference of 0 and 3 points to show for their efforts. That means that in the stakes for the four best third placed teams, Northern Ireland are currently 2nd out of 3 behind Slovakia and ahead of Albania.

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Northern Ireland came up with a stupendous effort to down Ukraine 2-0 in a hailstorm-interrupted Euro 2016 group league game in Lyon on Thursday.

West Bromwich Albion defender Gareth McAuley gave Ireland the lead in the 49th minute, one that was added to by midfielder Niall McGinn in the dying seconds of second half injury time at the Parc Olympique Lyonnais. The win has given Ireland a huge chance of getting into the last 16 of the quadrennial event.

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Goals by Shkodran Mustafi and Bastian Schweinsteiger helped World Champions Germany to a 2-0 win over Ukraine in their Group C opener at Euro 2016 in their bid for a record fourth European crown.

It was the sixth meeting between the two sides with Ukraine never having beaten Germany. However, the Germans struggled to carve open a disciplined Ukrainian defence, who were not overawed by the occasion or at the prospect of facing the world champions.

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Trouble in the French camp is as commonplace as danger in the jungle and Didier Deschamps is now facing the prospect of being the first manager not to take France to a World Cup in two decades. Les Blues’ waterloo moment came in the cold of Kiev where they succumbed to two late goals, a penalty and Laurent Koscielny’s sending off.

France rarely threatened their opponents from open play, depending on Fran Ribery’s set-pieces to break past the frugal Ukraine defence. The first blow arrived just after the hour mark when Roman Zozulya capped off a great team move with a patient finish from close range. The striker waited for his marker and Hugo Lloris to go to the ground before picking a spot in the bottom corner.

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The Challenge Tour will venture into new territory next year for the inaugural Kharkov Superior Cup in Ukraine, which will take place from September 12 – 15. The tournament will be contested in the north-eastern town of Kharkov at Superior Golf & Spa Resort, which boasts a 7,000-yard course reminiscent of a Scottish links layout, superb practice facilities, a five star hotel on site and a St Andrews-themed golf museum.

It will be the first time a Ukrainian venue has hosted a tournament on either the Challenge Tour or European Tour.

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