Ukrainian soccer league back in action

Shakhtar Donetsk players draped in Ukrainian flags applaud as they line up before a Ukrainian Premier League match in Kyiv on Tuesday.

KYIV — The new season of the Ukrainian Premier League kicked off in Kyiv on Tuesday, with the first match played in an empty stadium amid looming threats of Russian attacks in the run-up to Ukraine’s Independence Day on Aug. 24.

The league was forced to suspend the previous season following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

The players of Shakhtar Donetsk and FC Metalist 1925 of Kharkiv entered the field Tuesday draped in Ukrainian flags, and after a moment of silence for the war dead, a Ukrainian soldier took a ceremonial kickoff.

The match between teams from the eastern Ukrainian cities of Donetsk and Kharkiv ended in a 0-0 draw.