Ukraine national anthem: Lyrics, video and meaning behind football team's pre-match song

Ukraine national anthem 2020Getty

Before every international football game, the two teams stand to attention as their respective national anthems are played.

The pre-match custom, mandated by FIFA, serves as a final scene-setter, charging the crowd and players up as the they get ready for the intensity of battle on the pitch.

GOAL takes a look at the Ukraine national anthem, its lyrics in English, who wrote it and what it means.

What is the Ukraine national anthem?

'Shche ne vmerla Ukrayina', which translates into English as 'Ukraine has not yet perished', is the national anthem of Ukraine.

The lyrics are based on an 1862 poem by Pavlo Chubynsky and the music was composed by Mykhailo Verbytsky in 1863.

The song was formally adopted as the country's anthem by the Ukrainian parliament in 1992.

Ukraine national anthem lyrics

Ukrainian lyrics:

Shche ne vmerla Ukrayiny, ni slava, ni volya,
Shche nam, brattya molodiyi, usmikhnet’sya dolya.
Zhinut’ nashi vorizhen’ki, yak rosa na sontsi,
Zapanuyem i mi, brattya, u svoyiy storontsi.

Dushu y tilo mi polozhim za nashu svobodu
I pokazhem, shcho mi, brattya, kozats’koho rodu.

English translation:

The glory and freedom of Ukraine has not yet perished
Luck will still smile on us brother-Ukrainians.
Our enemies will die, as the dew does in the sunshine,
And we, too, brothers, we'll live happily in our land.

We’ll not spare either our souls or bodies to get freedom
And we’ll prove that we brothers are of Cossack kin.

You can see a video of the Ukraine national anthem being sung below (and here if video doesn't play).

What is the meaning of the Ukraine national anthem?

As with many national anthems, Ukraine's state song is imbued with themes of patriotism with some militaristic tones.

The lyrics, from the 19th century, refer to a desire for independence and freedom, while declaring that those who seek to deny that goal ("enemies") to the Ukrainian people will ultimately perish.

The chorus of the anthem declares a resolute commitment to laying their lives on the line to achieve freedom and there is a reference to the Cossacks, a fierce warrior people hailing from the steppes of Ukraine and Russia.

Phonetic spelling of the Ukraine national anthem

When Scotland prepared to face off against Ukraine in a World Cup play-off game in 2022, the fixture took on greater significance due to the war between Russia and Ukraine.

As a mark of solidarity, Scotland fans were encouraged to sing the Ukraine national anthem and popular language app Duolingo produced a video showing the phonetic spelling of the song.

It can be watched below.

More football anthems and chants