Petrakov: Win was for every Ukrainian 'who fight with every last drop of their blood'

Ukraine coach dedicates 3-1 World Cup play-off victory over Scotland to compatriots with a match against Wales up next for a place at Qatar 2022

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Oleksandr Petrakov hailed Wednesday's World Cup play-off win over Scotland as "a huge victory for Ukraine" and dedicated the victory to his compatriots who "fight with every last drop of their blood".

The 3-1 triumph at Hampden Park set Ukraine up for a showdown against Wales in Cardiff on Sunday for a place in the World Cup finals for just the second time.

Ukraine coach Petrakov said he had been left exhausted by the 90 minutes - the first competitive game his side have played since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February.

"I have no emotions, all emotions are left out on the pitch. This victory is not for me, not for our players but for our country, so it was a huge victory for Ukraine," he told reporters.

"It was a team effort, a team victory, team work, they did everything for the people they play for. They played for those watching back home, for the armed forces in the trenches, for those in hospitals. They say thanks to us and we return our gratitude to them."

The 64-year-old was in no doubt about the significance of a victory achieved in front of over 2,000 travelling fans from the Ukrainian diaspora and watched back home by millions on television.

"We played for them, for those who fight with their last drop of blood, for those who suffer every day, we made baby steps towards our great aim," he said. "Now we have the Wales game to come and we will do everything people expect us to do."

Goals from Andriy Yarmolenko, Roman Yaremchuk and Artem Dovbyk fired Ukraine to victory with Callum McGregor grabbing Scotland's goal on 79 minutes.

Petrakov said he had been overwhelmed by the way he and his team had been welcomed by the Scottish public ahead of such a vital game for both teams.

"In this difficult time, I want to extend our gratitude to the people of Scotland, this incredible hospitable place," he said.

"Walking on the street yesterday, people were coming up to us and wishing us all the best, it was incredible. Thank you Scotland, we will never forget that."

Scotland v Ukraine ratings

Updated: June 02, 2022, 7:17 AM
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