Ukrainian Melitschenko: Training in Dresden, longing for peace

Kyrylo Melitschenko has lost his laugh, his cheerfulness. The footballer of the Ukrainian first division FK Mariupol talks softly, almost shy over the past three months. And he does not talk about football, but about his home in Ukraine. A home that he has not seen for over two months. A home that does not exist anymore. The war has made a ruined city from the once beautiful mariupol. Since then, the young footballer has been distributed. On a return home, even as a footballer, is not to think in the foreseeable future.

Melitschenkos language is the football

The quiet, timid “hello” is the only German word that Melitschenko comes over the lips on Monday. Then his girlfriend translates Anja. “He can not speak the language so well yet. But we practice every day,” she says half apologetically. His real language is football, because one would understand everywhere.

Actually, Melitschenko plays right defenders at the FK Mariupol. As for Dynamo Dresden, which currently gives a training opportunity to the talented man, it is also for the team from the Eastern Ukraine for the class blast. There are many more similarities between both clubs. But that’s why these days are not.

Since the fathers are not allowed to leave the country, the mothers do not want to go.

Kyrylo Melitschenko

While he speaks with a quiet voice, girlfriend Anja is close to tears several times. “Mariupol was such a beautiful city,” she says. The club grounds of the Ukrainian first division and his apartment in a tenement of the Eastern Ukrainian city with all their personal belongings are completely destroyed. The parents of the couple are now fled from the cellars of the capital Kyiv in the west of the country. “Since the fathers are not allowed to leave the country, the mothers do not want to go,” says Melitschenko.

No return from Turkey

He himself had the last time Ukrainian ground under his feet on January 20th. From there it went to the training camp in Turkey – without knowing that he would not see his country so fast. On February 24, the team sat at the airport, ready for return. “But there was already blocked the airspace in Ukraine. We drove back to the hotel,” says the 22-year-old over the day of the beginning of the war. The club then shared the players that they should look for clubs where they can keep fit.

Dynamo answered within two hours

Girlfriend Anja, who has very good knowledge of German after a one-year internship in Potsdam, therefore wrote several clubs in Germany and asked for help. “Within two hours we had a feedback from Dynamo, two days later we were in Dresden,” reports Melitschenko.

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For about two weeks, the young Ukrainian has been training in Dresden and is largely supplied by the club. From the team, he explains the Russian Anton Mitryushkin the most. “I have a lot of contact with Anton, he helps me a lot. He knows the truth about this war, but we do not talk much about it. Politics is still politics,” says Melitschenko.

It is an incredible stadium, incredible fans. I have never experienced something like that, even if I was there only as a viewer.

Kyrylo Melitschenko

He did not know anything about Dynamo Dresden before his arrival. Last Friday he was at the 1: 2 defeat against FC Schalke 04 for the first time in the Rudolf-Harbig Stadium. “It’s an incredible stadium, incredible fans. I have never experienced anything like that, even if I was only there as a viewer,” he tells of his visit. The first smile tails over his lips on this day.

Even once for the black-yellow playing Melitschenko is not allowed in this season except in training and in testing games. The German Football Association (DFB) prohibits this with reference to the athletic integrity of the competition.

Dynamo co-coach Heiko Scholz is still pleased with the training services of the newness: “You can see that he can keep up with us. He makes a good job and feels good, even if he does not understand everything, that’s a good boy. ” Melitschenko itself means that he would like to stay if it would be possible “.

“Thank you Germany”

The footballer who had no armed service due to his logistics studies had nothing more than easy peace. “Everything else is not important. It should finally be over, so that we can go back home,” emphasizes Melitschenko. Full of gratitude and humility, the footballer says, “Thanks, Germany.”

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