UCL Preview 2021-22: Shakhtar Donetsk vs Inter Milan – key stats, H2H, line-ups, prediction

Lautaro Martinez-Inter Milan

Shakhtar Donetsk will welcome Inter Milan on 28th September for their second group stage match of the Champions League.

Stadium: Olimpiysky National Sports Complex

Key Statistics

Inter have started the 2021-22 season on a slower pace than the last term, losing their opening Champions League fixture.

Shakhtar Donetsk suffered a shock defeat against Moldovan-based Sheriff Tiraspol in their first match of the group stage.

Inter are the reigning Serie A champions but are currently placed third, securing 14 points out of a possible 18.

Head to Head (H2H)

The two European stalwarts have locked horns on five occasions, with Shakhtar never tasting victory in any of them. Meanwhile, Inter have triumphed over their counterparts twice, with three of the said encounters ending in stalemate.

Recent form

Inter: W-D-L-W-W

Shakhtar Donetsk: D-W-L-W-W

Shakhtar Donetsk

Having been drawn into a group alongside two European giants, Real Madrid and Inter, Shakhtar Donetsk would’ve fancied their chances of securing at least third place in the group stage. However, their future Europa League plan has taken a serious hit following an early defeat against amateurs Sheriff Tiraspol. While the Ukrainian giants have faired much better in their domestic campaign, acquiring 22 points in nine games, their continental journey seems to be heading towards a disaster.

The Miners are vying with Dynamo Kiev for the Ukrainian top-flight this season, having forfeited a fifth consecutive league title to their rivals the last term. Despite their experience on the continental stage, Shakhtar have only won four of their last 20 Champions League fixtures, which could signal another drubbing at the hands of Inter.

I don’t think Inter will change their approach. We know how they play. But even if we do everything we can we won’t necessarily win. I’ve said that Inter are stronger than us but I thought we were stronger than Sheriff. I just know that we have to be good, with the ball and without it. We need to play with courage.

Inter are a very strong side. I think they are even stronger than last season when they won Serie A. Of course, they  have lost Lukaku and Hakimi but they replaced them with good players. They also lost [coach Antonio] Conte, who I consider to be one of the best coaches in Italy. But they appointed Simone Inzaghi, also a great coach. This team won the scudetto and they are full of confidence.

Roberto De Zerbi, Shakhtar manager

Possible line-ups

Pyatov, Dodo, Marlon, Matvienko, Ismaily, Maycon, Antonio; Tete, Pedrinho, Marlos, Traore


Júnior Moraes (knee), Fernando (unspecified), Dentinho (unspecified)

Doubtful: Konoplyanka (unspecified), Bondar (knee), Sudakov (unspecified)

Inter Milan

Following the departure of their talisman Romelu Lukaku, Inter have had some issues in stamping their supremacy for the second season running. In six Serie A matches, the Nerazzurri have already drawn twice, including a 2-2 tie against minnows Sampdoria. With Lukaku and Achraf Hakimi both taking the exit door in favour of greener pastures, Inter have a weakened core this season.

Nevertheless, due to their still-competent squad and the struggles of fellow Italian heavyweights, Simone Inzaghi’s side are the favourites to retain their title. To bolster their hopes, newcomers Edin Dzeko and Joaquin Correa have had no qualms in settling into life at the San Siro, with the duo racking up a combined tally of seven goals so far.

Possible line-ups

Handanovic, Skriniar, De Vrij, Bastoni, Darmian, Barella, Brozovic, Calhanoglu, Perisic, Martinez, Dzeko


Sensi (knee)


Shakhtar Donetsk win : Draw : Inter Milan win :: 15% : 21% : 64%

Teams to score total 3 goals or more : 60%


Even though Shakhtar possess the pedigree to notch up their first win against the Italian giants, Inter have the clear advantage going into this fixture. Going by the paper, Inter have a much better squad in terms of quality, and aside from any surprise upset, should have no problems in defeating Shakhtar come tomorrow.

Shakhtar Donetsk 1-2 Inter Milan