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Ukraine happy with underdogs tag ahead Q/final against England

Ukraine

 

Ukraine midfielder Ruslan Malinovskyi believes the pressure will be all on England in Saturday’s Euro 2020 quarter-final clash in Rome.

Ukraine, who lost two of their group games, pulled off a shock to reach the last eight with a last-gasp extra-time victory over Sweden on Tuesday.

An England side packed with Premier League talent will be the clear favourites in the Italian capital on Saturday but Malinovskyi says that is the way Ukraine would prefer it.

The 28-year-old Atalanta player said: “It is nice to be in this position, that England are favourites. It gives more pressure to them, not us.

“We were a little bit disappointed after the (group) game against Austria and we showed a good reaction against Sweden. Of course it gives us some confidence for the game against England.

“We saw a lot of results that we didn’t expect from the other teams Switzerland and Czech Republic (beating France and Holland respectively).

 

“It showed in this tournament anything is possible, every team can win. This makes football more beautiful, I think.

“We need to come to this game against England in a good mood. We will have a great atmosphere and it will be a fantastic game for us.”

read alsoShevchenko hails Ukraine ‘heroes’ as focus turns to England at Euro 2020

Neither side will have any travelling supporters in the 16,000 crowd due to coroanvirus restrictions but a number of tickets have been put on general sale and could be bought by fans already based in Italy.

After being impressed by the support for the team at games so far in the tournament, Malinovskyi hopes for another good turnout in Rome.

“A lot of people live in Italy and I am sure a lot of people will come to support us,” he said at a press conference. “We felt it in the other games in Bucharest and, even when we played Scotland, they came to support us.

Ukraine will hope to benefit from the power of the crowd in Rome

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