Kiev crisis eases task for United

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The Independent Online

Dynamo Kiev, whom Manchester United must beat at Old Trafford on Wednesday if they are to proceed to the next phase of the Champions' League, face a serious injury crisis.

Dynamo Kiev, whom Manchester United must beat at Old Trafford on Wednesday if they are to proceed to the next phase of the Champions' League, face a serious injury crisis.

The Ukrainians have three of their key players not only out of the match but also out for the season. Dynamo's vice-president of football operations, Josef Sabo, said yesterday that the Ukraine internationals Andrei Husin, Vitaly Kosovsky and Gennady Moroz, as well as the reserve goalkeeper Marian Marushchak, had all left for France to undergo medical tests.

Husin and Moroz have groin problems while Kosovsky and Marushchak have leg injuries. All four are likely to have surgery. However, the central defender Vladyslav Vashchyuk, who missed Dynamo's last two league games with a pulled hamstring, should be fit to turn out at Old Trafford.

"I think we can count on Vashchyuk against Manchester," Sabo said. "On Saturday he tested himself, playing for our reserve team, and even scored a goal."

The Ukrainians, bottom of the group and already eliminated from the Champions' League, must win at Old Trafford in order to finish third and qualify for the Uefa Cup.

The Airdrie preferred bidder Steve Archibald hopes to take a step closer to securing the future of the club today. Archibald, who is set to meet council leaders over the ownership of a piece of land adjacent to the New Broomfield stadium, said: "It's a difficult time. There are no guarantees in anything but there's only one issue to be resolved, about the area of land in front of the stadium."

The Diamonds were kept alive by a £15,000 cheque from a supporters' group to the provisional liquidators KPMG on Thursday after Archibald and his team had found themselves locked out of the ground.

Clubs from the West of Scotland Association - Albion Rovers, Hamilton Academicals, Kilmarnock, Motherwell and St Mirren - have written to the provisional liquidators to urge that everything possible be done to save Airdrie.

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