Roman Yaremchuk gives moving interview on Russian-Ukrainian war as Benfica knock out Ajax
Roman Yaremchuk sheds light on Russian invasion of Ukraine as Benfica advance to quarter-finals
The 26-year-old forward played the final 18 minutes of Benfica’s 1-0 win over Ajax on Tuesday, which saw the Portuguese side advance to the quarter-finals for the first time since the 2015/16 season .
“It’s hard but I’m a professional” – Yaremchuk
During his post-match press conference after beating Ajax, Yaremchuk was asked how he coped with the war in his country and the striker said it had been a difficult time for him.
Yaremchuk said: “You know it’s so difficult for me but I’m a professional. I have to fight here, I have to fight on the pitch.
“My friends are fighting in Ukraine, my people are fighting in Ukraine and I have to fight here. I can’t fight there but I can fight here on the pitch.
Over two innings, Yaremchuk scored a goal against Ajax to help eliminate the Dutch side 3-2 on aggregate.
The 26-year-old came through the ranks of Ukrainian club Dynamo Moscow before joining Belgian side Ghent in 2017 and then agreeing a deal with Benfica in July 2021.
Yaremchuk has played 36 times for the Ukrainian national team and has scored 12 goals since his debut on September 6, 2018.