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Ukraine coach Blokhin hospitalized, will miss World Cup qualifier against Moldova

Ukraine coach Oleh Blokhin has had surgery to remove a blood clot from a carotid artery and is expected to miss his team's World Cup qualifying match in Moldova on Friday.

The Ukrainian soccer federation says assistant coach Andriy Bal will take over in Blokhin's absence.

Blokhin has said he will step down as national team coach after the Oct. 16 World Cup qualifier against Montenegro. Last month, he was appointed coach of Dynamo Kiev, where he played throughout his career in the 1970s and '80s.

Mykhailo Radutsky, the chief doctor at the clinic where Blokhin was treated, says the surgery was successful but it's too early to say when he will be released.