How Shakhtar can reach the Champions League play-offs for the first time in six years: there is only one way
The day before, Shakhtar Donetsk played another Champions League group stage match. Marino Pušić's team won a difficult victory over Belgian side Antwerp in a nominally home match in Hamburg, Germany. This success allowed the Ukrainians to guarantee the European Cup spring.
In another match, Catalan Barcelona, having conceded the first goal, managed to beat Portuguese Porto and qualified for the Champions League playoffs. After these matches, the Donetsk and Portuguese clubs have nine points each.
On the final game day at the Dragao Stadium, Porto and Shakhtar will have a head-to-head battle for the second ticket to the last 16 of the tournament. In order to get out of the Champions League group for the first time in six years, Pušić's men need to win with any score.
Any other result will send the Miners to the Europa League playoffs, where they will meet one of the teams that will take second place in their group.
Last season, Shakhtar reached the last 16 of the Europa League, defeating French side Rennes in the knockout stages and then losing to Feyenoord Rotterdam. The last time the Donetsk team played in the CL playoffs was in the 2017/18 season. The Ukrainians left the group with Manchester City, Napoli and Feyenoord and lost to Roma only by the away goal rule in the 1/8 finals.
The Porto vs Shakhtar match will take place on Wednesday, December 13, at 22:00 Kyiv time.
As OBOZ.UA previously reported, the Champions League match between Shakhtar and Antwerp ended in a clash between the players, which was not broadcast and ended in a sending-off.