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Stomach bug swamps Ukraine

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 6 Jun 2012

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Ukraine coach Oleg Blokhin has revealed that the Euro 2012 co-hosts’ squad had been decimated by a stomach bug.

Caner Erkin and Mustafa Pektemek scored to hand Turkey a 2-0 friendly win over Ukraine on Tuesday, with Blokhin left worrying about the health of his players ahead of their opening Euro match against Sweden in Kiev on Monday.

Key midfielder Anatoliy Tymoshchuk is currently in hospital and on a drip due to the illness that has also affected striker Andriy Voronin.

“Tymoshchuk is still in a bad condition, we have got him on a drip,” Blokhin told reporters following the defeat.

“And this is not funny. We have to wait for the doctors’ verdict but the situation is far from funny.

“I do not know the reason for the illness because we all ate different food. We have one week to recover… it’s good that it did not happen on June 11 (when Ukraine play Sweden).”

Defender Bohdan Butko and midfielder Denys Garmash were among those ill, Blokhin confirmed, but the pair agreed to play through the pain barrier so that Ukraine could complete the friendly with the Turks.

“If Butko and Garmash refused to play I could have cancelled the game because of a lack of players,” Blokhin said.

Blokhin used five substitutes during the fixture, including captain Andriy Shevchenko, with both Butko and Garmash featuring from the start.

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