Prague police are bracing for what could be a violent soccer match between Prague’s Sparta team and the Polish club Lech Poznań, to take place in the Czech capital on Tuesday evening. Hundreds of officers will be patrolling the streets ahead of the match. Some 3000 Polish fans are expected to arrive in Prague, some as early as Tuesday morning. Foreign police will be searching for arms and checking the passports of fans travelling into the Czech Republic from Poland at the border.
The Czech football goalkeeper Petr Čech has called for a change in the rules to allow substitute goalies to receive medals if they play any part in a league competition. Currently all players have to have made at least 10 appearances during a Premier League season to receive a medal if their club win the title. But in an interview for the Observer newspaper the Chelsea star said it never happens that a second choice goalkeeper makes that many appearances in a league campaign. Čech said the current regulation was “ridiculous” and should be amended to take into account the different situation of back-up keepers.
Sparta Prague have reached the third qualifying round of European football’s Champions League after overcoming Latvia's Liepajas Metalurgs on Wednesday. The Czech title-holders had won the first leg 3:0 away, and sealed the tie with a 2:0 win in Prague on Wednesday after scoring twice from free kicks in the first half. Sparta’s next opponents in the competition are the Polish side Poznan.
Drunken Baník Ostrava football fans ransacked train carriages taking them back from their opening league fixture against Příbram on Sunday night. Fans ripped down curtains, smashed a window and broke a sink in the toilets. Two fans were also arrested following an assault upon a policeman. Czech Railways estimated the damage at around 25,000 crowns. The match between the two teams, which passed without incident, was earmarked as high risk following violence in May when 25 fans were detained.
Slavia Prague football team’s modern Eden stadium has no building permission to host concerts according to the local council. The finding surfaced on Monday, a day before the stadium is due to host a concert by the American pop singer Pink. The council added the stadium did not meet the required noise regulations for concerts. It said it could not stop the event but could impose a fine. The owners of the stadium have contested the council’s interpretation saying that they are authorised to stage cultural events. Last year the stadium hosted a concert by Depeche Mode.
In Sports News: Hradec Králové end champions Sparta Prague’s 33-game unbeaten run as they return to Czech football’s first division in style; Bohemians 1905 draw with Slavia in their first home game at the latter’s Eden stadium; Roman Kreuziger drops out of the leading 10 riders in the Tour de France; and it’s love-all as tennis players Štěpánek and Vaidišová wed.
Defending champions Sparta Prague lost to newcomers Hradec Králové in the first round of the top Czech football division on Saturday. Visitors Sparta conceded an early goal and only managed to equalize in the 55th minute. The hosts Hradec Králové were defending throughout much of the second half but surprisingly took a 2:1 with half an hour to go. The goal upset the title holders who were unable to come back; the game was Sparta’s first defeat in 15 months, and only third season opening loss in 17 years.
The Prague clubs of Bohemians and Slavia kicked off the new year of the top Czech football division on Friday with a 1:1 draw. The game took place at the Eden stadium, which is now the home of both sides. Bohemians took an early lead against Slavia with a nice shot by Bartek in the first minute. Slavia then took the initiative and Kisel equalized 16 minutes later. The rest of the game saw Bohemians on the defensive but Slavia were not able to convert any of several opportunities.
Baník Ostrava beat WTI Georgia 6:0 in the first leg of the second qualifying round of UEFA’s Europa League in Tbilisi on Thursday. The Czech side first scored some 15 minutes before the end of the first half but added five more goals within 20 minutes in the second. The home side only came close to scoring in the 37th minute but the header missed the goal. The second leg is scheduled for July 22 in Ostrava.
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