In Sports News this Monday: supporters continue to boycott the home games of Bohemians 1905 due to a new ground-share deal – player Lukáš Hartig says he hopes they come around; Milan Baroš signs a lucrative new deal with Galatasaray; Tomáš Berdych is now seventh in the world, his highest ranking to date; and ice hockey goalie Milan Hnilička retires at 37.
Czech football goalie Petr Čech – the starter for the national squad – will miss next Wednesday’s friendly against Latvia as he is still not 100 percent fit, after injuring a calf muscle in July. The news was confirmed by former player turned manager Vladimír Šmicer. National team coach Michal Bílek has called up Jan Laštůvka – who plays for the Ukranian club Dnipropetrovsk to take Čech’s place.
Three Czech clubs have been eliminated in qualification for the continent’s second tier football competition, the Europa League. Viktoria Plzeň had two men sent off as they went down 3:0 to Besiktas in Istanbul on Thursday, losing that tie 4:1 on aggregate. Baník Ostrava were beaten 2:1 at home by Dnepr Mogilev, giving the Belarusian side an aggregate 3:1 win, while Jablonec also failed to make home advantage pay, losing 3:0 on the night and 4:0 overall to APOEL Nicosia. The only Czech team in European competition this season will be Sparta Prague. The title holders have reached the final qualification round for the Champions League, and are guaranteed a Europa League spot if they don’t get past Slovakia’s Žilina.
Football defender for Sparta Prague Tomáš Řepka, has been given a three-match ban in the Czech domestic league. A disciplinary commission ruling on an incident in which the player spat on Slovacko’s Ladislav Volešak, also said Řepka would not be allowed to captain his side until next year. The defender has already missed one of his matches, against České Budějovice, and will not play in Sparta’s match-up against Ostrava or Příbram. Řepka, who is known for having a short fuse, has expressed regret over his actions.
Sparta Prague have reached the final qualification round for football’s lucrative Champions League. The Czech title-holders beat the Polish side Lech Poznan 1:0 away in the second leg on Wednesday, giving them a 2:0 win on aggregate. Marek Matejovsky and Libor Sionko were sent off during that game, meaning they will miss the next round, as will Bony Wilfried, who picked up a second yellow card. If Sparta fail to make it to the Champions League, they will automatically enter the continent’s second-tier international club competition, the Europa League.
In Sports News this Monday: the Czechs take only one medal at the European Athletics Championships, bronze for Barbora Špotáková in the javelin – coach Tomáš Dvořák says a young team is still lacking something; shooter Kateřina Emmons fails to reach the finals at the ISSF World Championship in Munich; and Plzeň top the Czech football league, while champions Sparta lose their second game in three.
Viktoria Plzeň drew 1:1 at home with the Turkish club Besiktas in their Europa League third qualifying round first leg on Thursday night. The Czech side went 1:1 ahead before the visitors managed to draw even with a penalty. In the same competition, Jablonec lost 1:0 away to APOEL Nicosia, while Baník Ostrava were beaten 1:0 by Dnepr Mogilev in Belarus.
Football’s Sparta Prague edged Lech Poznan 1:0 on Tuesday evening in first-leg of their Champions League third-round qualifier. The win gives them a slender advantage when they face their opponents in the second-leg in Poland. Sparta’s Erich Brabec scored the game’s lone goal with 12 minutes remaining after Libor Sionko set up a cross leading to the strike. Ahead of the match, security was heightened to prevent any clashes between Sparta fans and visiting Polish rowdies; there were only a few minor incidents.
Police are out in force for a Champions League preliminary round match between Sparta Prague and Lech Poznan at Prague’s Letná stadium on Tuesday evening. Hundreds of Polish fans, among them notorious rowdies, have been arriving for the match in the course of the day. A police spokeswoman said the police had checked dozens of buses crossing the border, returning a number of fans without Ids who were suspected of having been extradited for causing trouble on previous occasions. Around three thousand Polish fans are expected to attend the match, gathering first on Prague’s Old Town Square and making their way to the stadium on foot. A similar event last year ended in street clashes with the police after Polish rowdies attempted to force their way into the football grounds without tickets and vandalized public property after failing to gain admission.
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.
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