Champions League qualifying continues with Genk and Shakhtar Donetsk facing off in the first leg of their third-round tie on Tuesday at 7pm (UK time)
Both sides have entered qualifying at this round owing to their league finishes, with Shakhtar Donetsk working towards a fifth-straight group stage appearance while Genk have their eyes on their fourth overall.
Genk vs Shakhtar Donetsk live stream:
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Where to watch Genk vs Shakhtar Donetsk on TV:
- UK: N/A
- US: Paramount+
Scoreline prediction: Genk 1-2 Shakhtar Donetsk
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Genk vs Shakhtar Donetsk build-up, previous line-ups & injury news:
Although they are one of Belgium’s biggest clubs in modern history, Genk haven’t had the same success as the likes of Anderlecht, Club Brugge and Standard Liege and, as a result, rarely get to test themselves in the Champions League. Genk’s appearance in 2019/20 was just the third time they had reached the Champions League group stage, automatically qualifying as Belgian champions, but they bowed out with just one point from six games against Red Bull Salzburg, Napoli and Liverpool. John van den Brom’s side go into this game in bad form, however, combining a 3-2 defeat to Club Brugge in the Belgian Supercup with a draw against Standard Liege and loss to KV Oostende in the league.
Shakhtar Donetsk, on the other hand, are now a household name among Champions League fans and will be looking to extend their current run of group stage appearances. The Ukrainian side have automatically qualified for the group stage in each of the past four seasons but have dropped down to the Europa League for the past three years, placed in tough groups alongside the likes of Real Madrid, Inter Milan, Atalanta, Manchester City (twice), Lyon and Borussia Monchengladbach. Shakhtar haven’t been put through Champions League qualifying since 2016/17 when they were knocked out at this stage by BSC Young Boys. In the league, it has been a positive start for Shakhtar with two wins from two.
- Genk (vs KV Oostende): Vandevoordt; Preciado, Sadick, McKenzie, Arteaga; Heynen, Hrosovsky; Ito, Tresor, Bongonda; Dessers.
- Shakhtar Donetsk (vs PFK Lviv): Trubin; Dodo, Marlon, Matvienko, Kornienko; Stepanenko, Marcos Antonio; Tete, Alan Patrick, Solomon; Traore.
Neither side has any fresh injury concerns going into this game and will look to be full strength to keep their Champions League hopes high.
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Player to watch: Lassina Traore (Shakhtar Donetsk)
Shakhtar have used the summer transfer window to bolster their squad and one arrival has already hit the ground running. Striker Lassina Traore joined from Ajax on a five-year deal having had a decent campaign with the Dutch side, scoring seven goals and recording four assists in just 553 minutes of Eredivisie action and one in the Champions League.
Traore has gone straight into the Shakhtar starting XI upon his arrival, leading the line ahead of Junior Moraes and Detinho, and it has been a good call. The 20-year-old Burkina Faso international has scored in each of his Shakhtar appearances so far, opening the scoring against both Ingulets and PFK Lviv.
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