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Ukrainian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Country Ukraine
Confederation UEFA
Founded 1991 (Vyshcha Liha)
2008 (Premier League)
Number of teams 12
Relegation to Ukrainian First League
Level on pyramid 1
Domestic cup(s) Ukrainian Cup
Ukrainian Super Cup
UEFA cup(s) UEFA Champions League
UEFA Europa League
Current champions Shakhtar Donetsk (11th title) (2017–18)
Most successful club Dynamo Kyiv (15 titles)
Website Official website
Football current event 2018–19

The Ukrainian Premier League is the highest division of Ukrainian annual football championship. As the Vyshcha Liha (Supreme League) it was formed in 1991 upon discontinuation of the Soviet championship and included the Ukrainian-based clubs that competed in the Soviet competitions. In 1996 along with all the professional football leagues of Ukraine, the Supreme League became a member of the Professional Football League of Ukraine.

In 2008 it was reformed into a more autonomous entity of both the Professional League and the Football Federation of Ukraine, officially changing its name to the current one. Its rank was 8th highest in Europe as rated by UEFA as of 2014.

Among Ukrainian fans the most popular Ukrainian clubs are Dynamo Kyiv and Shakhtar Donetsk. Far behind those two are trailing Metalist Kharkiv, Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, Karpaty Lviv and Chornomorets Odesa.

General overview and format

The 2017–18 season is the league's tenth after the restructuring of professional club football in 2008 and the 27th season since establishing of professional club's competition independent from the Soviet Union. As of 2017, Shakhtar Donetsk is the reigning Ukrainian Premier League champion. To summarise, Tavriya Simferopol won the first championship, while all the subsequent titles have gone to either Dynamo Kyiv or Shakhtar Donetsk. Only 3 teams, Dynamo Kyiv, Shakhtar Donetsk and Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk have participated in all previous 26 Ukrainian Top League competitions. The central feature of the league is a game between Dynamo and Shakhtar which is developed into the Klasychne (Classic).

On 15 April 2008 the new Premier-Liha (Premier League) was formed. The new sports organization consists of 12 football club organizations that take control of the league's operations under the statues of Football Federation of Ukraine, UEFA, and FIFA. With the new reorganization the format of the League was preserved, while the changes that were made were exclusively administrative. Competitions continued to be conducted in a double round robin format among 16 clubs. There were couple seasons when the 14-clubs league's composition was experimented. Since the 2014 Russian aggression, the league was reduced to 12 members, while its format also has changed. The season is still being played in a double round robin in the first half of a season, after which the league splits in half into two groups of six (6) teams. Both the top six and the bottom six play another a double round robin tournament with the clubs of own group.

The teams that reach the top ranks of the competition table at the end of each season as always gain the chance to represent Ukraine internationally in several prestigious tournaments (continental club tournaments). Also at the end of the season, the bottom clubs (usually two) are relegated to the First League (part of the lower Professional Football League) and replaced by the top clubs from that league. All the participants of the Premier League enter the National Cup competition and enter it at the round of 32 (1/16th of the final) or Round of 16 stage. Also the winner of the League at the beginning of every next season plays against the winner of the National Cup for the Ukrainian Super Cup (under administration of the Premier League).

Clubs

Current clubs

The following teams are competing in the 2018–19 season. Note, in parenthesis shown the actual home cities and stadiums.

Team Home city Stadium Capacity Position in
2015–16
Position in
2016–17
Position in
2017–18
Arsenal-CSKA Kyiv Kyiv Bannikov Stadium 1,678 SL:6nd FL:10th FL:1st
Desna Chernihiv Chernihiv Chernihiv Stadium 12,060 FL:8th FL:2nd FL:3rd
Dynamo Kyiv Kiev Olimpiyskiy National Sports Complex 70,050 1st 2nd 2nd
Karpaty Lviv Lviv Ukraina Stadium 28,051 7th 10th 8th
Lviv Lviv Arena Lviv 34,915 SL:TBA
Mariupol Mariupol Volodymyr Boiko Stadium 12,680 FL:4th FL:1st 5th
Oleksandriya Oleksandria CSC Nika Stadium 7,000 6th 5th 7th
Olimpik Donetsk Donetsk (Kiev) Lobanovskyi Dynamo Stadium 16,873 9th 4th 10th
Poltava Poltava Lokomotyv Stadium 2,500 FL:10th FL:12th FL:2nd
Shakhtar Donetsk Donetsk (Kharkiv) Metalist Stadium 40,003 2nd 1st 1st
Vorskla Poltava Poltava Oleksiy Butovsky Vorskla Stadium 24,795 5th 7th 3rd
Zorya Luhansk Luhansk (Zaporizhia) Slavutych-Arena 12,000 4th 3rd 4th

External links

Ukrainian Premier League 2018-19

Arsenal-CSKA Kyiv · Desna Chernihiv · Dynamo Kyiv · Karpaty Lviv · FC Lviv · FC Mariupol · Oleksandriya · Olimpik Donetsk · FC Poltava · Shakhtar Donetsk · Vorskla Poltava · Zorya Luhansk

Ukrainian Premier League seasons

2008–09 · 2009–10 · 2010–11 · 2011–12 · 2012–13 · 2013–14 · 2014–15 · 2015–16 · 2016–17 · 2017–18 · 2018–19 · 2019–20 ·

Current Ukrainian Premier League managers 2018–19

Oleh Boychyshyn (Karpaty) · Andriy Demchenko (Veres) · Paulo Fonseca (Shakhtar) · Alyaksandr Khatskevich (Dynamo) · Serhiy Litovchenko (Arsenal-CSKA) · Vasyl Sachko (Vorskla) · Roman Sanzhar (Olimpik) · Volodymyr Sharan (Oleksandriya) · Yuriy Vernydub (Zorya)

Football in Ukraine
League competitions The FFU Cup competitions
Premier League Ukraine Ukrainian Cup
First League Ukrainian clubs Ukrainian Super Cup
Second League Second League Cup (Defunct)
Top level football leagues of Europe (UEFA)

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