Roy Hodgson’s England are second in the section with four points, one place and one point better off than their opponents, who followed their opening 2-1 win against Sweden in Kyiv with a 2-0 loss to France in Donetsk. England drew 1-1 with France before a 3-2 defeat of Sweden on matchday two.
England will be through with a draw. If they lose, they have to hope France lose by enough so that England at least end level with Les Bleus on goal difference and goals scored, as England have a superior coefficient. Ukraine need to win to qualify; any other result and they are out.
Opponents in 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying, each side won their home game but England came out on top overall, finishing six points clear of second-placed Ukraine who lost to Greece in the play-offs.
England won the nations’ two friendly meetings, starting with a 2-0 Wembley success in May 2000. Robbie Fowler and Tony Adams scored the goals. Steven Gerrard made his debut and Andriy Shevchenko and Anatoliy Tymoshchuk featured for Ukraine.
England prevailed 3-0 in Newcastle in August 2004 thanks to goals from David Beckham, Michael Owen and debutant Shaun Wright-Phillips.
The teams will meet again in qualifying Group H for the 2014 World Cup, England hosting Ukraine on 11 September with the reverse fixture on 10 September 2013.
Ukraine beat England 2-0 in the 2009 UEFA European Under-19 Championship final at Donetsk’s RSC Olympiyskiy Stadium. Danny Welbeck lined up against Denys Garmash, who struck Ukraine’s first goal.
Selected previous meetings
10 October 2009: Ukraine 1-0 England (Nazarenko 29) – Dnipro Arena, Dnipropetrovsk, FIFA World Cup qualifier
Ukraine: Pyatov, Kucher, Kobin, Rakitskiy, Khacheridi, Gai, Tymoshchuk, Nazarenko (Yarmolenko 67), Rotan, Milevskiy, Shevchenko (Gusev 90+2).
England: Green, G Johnson, Ferdinand, Terry, A Cole, Lennon (James 12), Carrick, Lampard, Gerrard (Milner 46), Heskey (C Cole 72), Rooney.
Robert Green’s 12th-minute dismissal helped Ukraine inflict Fabio Capello’s only defeat in 18 qualifying games. Thevictory helped Ukraine gain a play-off berth but mattered little to already qualified England.
1 April 2009: England 2-1 Ukraine (Crouch 29, Terry 85; Shevchenko 74) – Wembley, London, FIFA World Cup qualifier
England: James, G Johnson, Ferdinand (Jagielka 88), Terry, A Cole, Lennon (Beckham 57), Lampard, Barry, Gerrrard, Crouch (Wright-Phillips 79), Rooney.
Ukraine: Pyatov, Yarmash, Mikhalik, Chygrynskiy, Shevchuk, Aliyev, Sliusar (Kalinichenko 88), Tymoshchuk, Valyayev (Nazarenko 62), Milevskiy, Voronin (Shevchenko 56).
Capello’s side got the better of Olexiy Mykhailychenko’s men in the sides’ first competitive meeting thanks to John Terry’s late winner.
Ukraine’s only previous final tournament appearance came at the 2006 World Cup when they overcame a 4-0 opening loss to Spain thanks to victories over Saudi Arabia and Tunisia. They then beat Switzerland on penalties, before defeat by Italy in the quarter-finals.
The defeat by France in Donetsk means Ukraine have now not won in the six games they have played in the city, registering two draws and four defeats. They scored in only two of those fixtures.
England came through qualifying undefeated – five wins and three draws – and entered these finals without a competitive loss since succumbing 4-1 to Germany at the 2010 World Cup, their heaviest tournament defeat.
England have not beaten the hosts at a major tournament in five attempts since beating Switzerland 2-0 at the 1954 World Cup. They lost 1-0 to Italy (1980 UEFA European Championship); drew 0-0 with Spain (1982 World Cup); lost 2-1 to Italy (1990 World Cup third-place play-off); went down 2-1 against Sweden to seal their first round elimination (EURO ’92); and lost to Portugal on penalties in the quarter-finals (UEFA EURO 2004).a