Czech soccer’s top flight competition, the Gambrinus League, resumed on Friday evening after a summer break. In the opening game of the 2011/2012 season, newly promoted Dukla Prague drew 0:0 at home with Sigma Olomouc. Later Bohemians 1905 beat Slavia Prague 2:0 at home at Eden, the stadium they share. There are 30 rounds in the Gambrinus League, with the last one set for late May.
The Czech Republic have reached the final of the European Under-19 Football Championship for the first time, after beating Serbia 4:2 in Friday’s semi-final in Romania. The Czechs, who are managed by Jaroslav Hřebík, had a 3:0 lead within 20 minutes thanks to strikes from Tomáš Přikryl, Tomáš Kalas, and Tomáš Jeleček. They face Spain – who are world and European champions at senior level – in Monday’s final.
Czech football champions Viktoria Plzeň beat Armenia’s Pyunik Yerevan 4:0 on Tuesday in the first leg of the Champions League’s second qualifying round. Plzeň arrived in the Armenian capital will little knowledge of their opponents, but Pyunik put up no major resistance. Plzeň went ahead early in the game with a header by Milan Bakoš, and the Czechs were leading 3:0 at half time after Pavel Horvath and Milan Bakoš converted penalty kicks. Daniel Kolář then set the final score in the 73rd minute. The second leg is scheduled in Plzeň for July 19.
In Sports News this week: Roman Kreuziger’s outlooks in Tour de France uncertain; in superbikes, bad luck streak continues for Jakub Smrž at the world Superbike championship event in Brno; Czech football champions Viktoria Plzeň begin their bid to reach Champions League; and Wimbledon winner Petra Kvitová receives a queen’s welcome in her home town.
The Czech Republic’s national football team dropped by four positions to the 36th place of the latest FIFA ranking, second worst position in history, due to the Czech team’s poor showing at a tournament in Japan earlier this month where the Czechs played two goalless games. The team now ranks 23rd among European nations; that means they will be seeded in the third pot at the draw of the 2014 World Cup qualification in July, with little chances of avoiding the strongest teams.
The former head of the Czech football association, František Chvalovský, has been sentenced to ten years in prison after being convicted of credit fraud. Mr Chvalovský was once a major figure in Czech football, but has spent the last 10 years trying – so far unsuccessfully – to defend himself from fraud charges.
A Prague court has sentenced the former president of the Czech Football Association František Chvalovský to 10 years in jail for extensive fraud that allegedly stripped Komerční banka of 1.5 billion crowns. Chvalovský, who was also a functionary and sponsor of the Chmel Blšany team, and four managers of the Satrapa and Českomoravská agrarni spolecnost companies are suspected of having used the money Komerčni banka lent them for the repayment of previous debts, not for the purchase of farm produce as agreed on with the bank. The four accomplices also received unconditional sentences. Chvalovský can appeal the verdict.
Czech tennis players Kvitová, Berdych breeze through first three rounds at Wimbledon but Cetkovaská crushed by Lisicki in 4th; the Czech U21 and U17 football teams suffer defeats at the European and World championships; the national inline hockey team edges the US by a score of 3:2 in the final of the World Championships; hockey goalie Ondřej Pavelec is now a Winnipeg Jet.
The chairman of the Czech Football Association, Ivan Hašek, announced on Sunday that he was leaving his post in favor of resuming a career in coaching. The resignation of the man who has sometimes been dubbed “the savior of Czech football” two years into his four-year contract was met with consternation and disappointment by members of the football association and the public alike. Samuel Beckwith, the blogger behind the Czech Football Daily, speaks about the implications of Mr. Hašek’s resignation, what it means for the future of soccer in this