Ukraine international midfielder OLEG GUSEV of Dynamo Kiev (white shirt) concentrates as Dutch international defender VURNON ANITA of Ajax Amsterdam prepares to challenge for the ball at the Lobanovsky Dynamo Stadium in Kiev. (Reuters photo)
UEFA Champions League
Playoff round, first leg
1 – Dynamo Kiev (UKR) ———- Gusev 68′
1 – Ajax Amsterdam (HOL) —— Vertonghen 57′
Veteran Ukranian international midfielder OLEG GUSEV leveled the score halfway through the second stanza to give DYNAMO KIEV a a 1-1 draw with visiting AJAX AMSTERDAM in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League playoff round.
Belgium international defender JAN VERTONGHEN had given Ajax Amsterdam the lead in the 57th minute with a gorgeous header from a set piece; Dutch international midfielder DEMY DE ZEEUW curled a free kick into the box which Vertonghen skillfully steered far post and into the net.
Although each side took ten attempts at goal, Dynamo Kiev only managed to hit the target twice. Ajax Amsterdam, on the other hand, brought better shooting boots and might have scored more if not for the work of 17-year-old goalkeeper MAKSYM KOVAL, who made six saves for Kiev. The youngster between the Dynamo sticks also had a hand in the tying goal.
27-year-old Gusev, who has earned 57 caps (7 goals) for Ukraine, was able to run onto a long goal kick from Koval after it had been flicked on and efficently slotted the ball past Holland World Cup goalkeeper MAARTEN STEKELENBURG to equalize for Dynamo Kiev in the 68th minute.
DYNAMO KIEV : Koval ; Popov, Betao, Leandro Almeida, Mikhalik ; Yarmolenko (Andre 70′), Vukojevic, Eremenko, Garmash, Gusev (Danilo Silva 82′) ; Shevchenko (El Kaddouri 77′)
AJAX AMSTERDAM : Stekelenburg ; van der Wiel, Oleguer, Vertonghen, Anita (Sulejmani 61′) ; Emanuelson, de Jong, de Zeeuw, Enoh (Eriksen 69′) ; Suarez, El Hamdaoui