Czech football’s first division is set for a major shake-up from the start of the 2018–2019 season. Following 30 rounds of the regular season, clubs will form three groups, with the top one battling for the title and the bottom one fighting to avoid the drop. But what is the motivation for the huge change?
Football midfielder Václav Pilař is eying a possible return to the sport with team Vikoria Plzeň after a long absence due to injury. Pilař, who suffered a long-term knee injury, could make an appearance on the pitch before the end of this season or start in the next, writes news site iDnes. The 28-year-old has a league title with Plzeň, spent two seasons in the Bundesliga and has 22 caps and five goals with the national team. He was one of the better players on the Czech squad at Euro 2012.
Visitors to Prague’s main Olšanské cemetery were treated to a somewhat strange sight last Saturday as Glasgow Celtic and Prague Slavia football fans congregated at one specific grave to the tune of a mournful bagpipe. They were paying homage to a Scotsman, Johnny Madden, a legend for both clubs who coached Slavia Prague for 25 years from just after the start of the 20th century to its third decade and took them to the top in Czech and European football.
Management of Prague football club Bohemians 1905 has sacked their 65-year-old manager Miroslav Koubek. The move follows a series of poor results with no win since October last year which sees the club fighting off relegation in the top Czech league. A replacement has not yet been named. Club official have confirmed that they are talking with the manager of second division Vlašim, Martin Hašek.
Tomáš Rosický, once regarded as one of Europe’s most promising young footballers, has just undergone Achilles tendon surgery in the latest in a long series of injury setbacks. Now 36, Rosický says he hopes to return for Sparta Prague next season. However, the former Dortmund and Arsenal midfielder has spent less than 20 minutes on the pitch since returning to his boyhood club last year. I asked football journalist Michal Petrák whether he believed Rosický would ever play again.
Czech midfield star Tomáš Rosický has undergone an operation on his Achilles heel in a bid to make a last comeback. The operation took place on Monday. The former Czech and Arsenal midfielder returned to Sparta Prague in August but played for just 19 minutes due to injury. The 36 year old will be out for the rest of the season but says he hopes to play next season for Sparta.
In football, the Czech Under 19 team have qualified for the European Championships to be staged in Georgia in July. The Czech team beat Austria 3:0 on Monday night to book their place. It is the first time the Czech have qualified for the finals since 2011. A draw would have been sufficient for qualification but the Czechs took the lead as early as the 63rd second and built on it. The Czechs were in the same qualifying group as Hungary and Scotland.