Kiev part 2: football

statue
One of the main things I wanted to see in Kiev was the statue to the four Dynamo Kiev/FC Start players who were executed by the Nazis during WW2. Unfortunately my tour guide, Helen, had no knowledge of where it might be and the only photograph I had seen of it didn’t give a location. After consulting with her driver and then her office, we drove to a small, overgrown recreation area on the outskirts of Kiev. ‘Is this it?’ Helen asked more in hope than expectation. I glanced upwards. The classical figure (with fig leaf – quite right too) was certainly kicking a ball and a woman passing by explained fervently to Helen of her hope that a proper plaque would one day be fitted. So, this may well be a monument to the players but it wasn’t the one I’d seen a picture of. Pity. I’d have liked to have paid my respects to Nikolai Trusevich, Alexander Klimenko, Vladimir Kuzmenko and Nikolai Korotkikh. But then perhaps by writing ‘What’s Ukrainian for Football? I already have. It does seem odd, though. Ukraine is supposed to be co-hosting the EURO 2012 Tournament with Poland. If the organizers hope for thousands of fans to flood the country to watch the matches, they should be writing trails and publishing postcards etc of the so-called Match of Death.

The other

Another priority for EUFA 2012  is to sort out the Public Conveniences in Kiev . This was one of the better ones I saw. I’ve made it thumbnail size so as not to make you squirm too much. Yes, it’s the Ladies. No way on earth is a WAG going to visit these!   One thing’s for sure – I will never complain about the loos in King’s Cross Station again!

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2 Responses to Kiev part 2: football

  1. Inna Polianska

    Dear Helena,
    It was a pleasure to meet you in Kiev and visit your workshops at PSI. I’m glad you enjoyed being here and hope this visit will inspire you to write more about Ukraine in your books. I wish Ukrainian children could enjoy the stories of your football team too (I mean those who don’t speak English). I personally find them very engaging and fun to read.
    I actually wanted to let you know that yesterday I came across an article that talked about the Star Stadium where the game Dinamo vs Germans took place. Apparently, they wanted to destroy it but fortunately the team of pro-active citizens held out in the struggle! I assume the monument should be somewhere near by that stadium, so if you decide to come back I’ll try to help you find it.
    Thank you for being with us!
    Sincerely,
    Inna

  2. Hi Inna,
    Thank you so much for the update about the Star Stadium. I’m so glad it was saved and I’m sure it will be a tourist attraction for all football fans during EURO 2012 when Ukraine co-host the games.
    I believe the statue is at Dynamo’s training ground rather than the main ground – is that the Star Stadium? Anyway, thank you again for taking the time to write. It was good to meet you and everyone at PSI.