In Sports News this Monday: Czech tennis star Tomáš Berdych fails to get past the group stage at his first ATP World Tour Finals, but says he is still happy after his best season to date; Aspen proves third time unlucky for Šárka Záhrobská in the slalom; Olympic speed skating champion Martina Sáblíková is still waiting for her first World Cup win this season; and Milan Baroš returns but ends up on the losing side in an Istanbul derby.
In Sports News this Monday: speed skating champion Sáblíková recovers from illness to reach the World Cup podium for the first time this season; Bauer also leaves his sickbed to perform well in the cross-country skiing World Cup; three Czech ice hockey clubs lose points for fielding unregistered players; and the gap at the top of the soccer league falls to four points on the last weekend before the winter break.
The Czech national football team drew 0:0 in a friendly against Denmark on Wednesday evening in front of around 10,000 stadium-goers in Aarhus. Early in the game, in the 18th minute, a penalty was awarded against the Czechs. But the spot-kick was saved by goalkeeper Petr Čech. Goals proved elusive throughout the match, although at one point Václav Kadlec came close, hitting the post. The game was the last international outing for both teams in 2010.
The English Premier League club West Bromwich Albion are hoping to buy the Czech international midfielder Jaroslav Plašil in January’s transfer window, the newspaper the Daily Mail reported. Plašil, who is 28 is currently at the French side Bordeax after spells at Monaco and Spain’s Ossasuna in. Meanwhile, there have been press reports that West Brom may loan their out-of-favour Czech striker Roman Bednář to Hull, who play in the second tier of English football.
In Sports News this Monday: Six months after being crowned world champions, the Czech Republic’s ice hockey players fail to take a single point in their first tournament of the new season; the gap at the top of the Czech football league narrows, after leaders Plzeň are held to a draw and Sparta win; Olympic champion speed skater Sáblíková is for once halted by illness; and warm weather brings a high turnout for Prague’s Velká Kunratická cross country race.
Just after the half way point in the season, the gap at the top of the Czech football league has narrowed to seven points. Leaders Viktoria Plzeň were held to a 1:1 at home by Slovan Liberec on Saturday, while second-placed Sparta Prague reduced their deficit after a 2:0 away victory over Slovácko. Plzeň have never taken the title, while Sparta have lifted the trophy 11 times since the establishment of the independent Czech league in 1993.
The Czech football manager Michal Bílek has given first call-ups to Jan Rezek of Viktoria Plzeň and Michal Hubník of Sigma Olomouc for a friendly against Denmark in a week’s time. However, 18-year-old Václav Kadlec of Sparta Prague, who scored on his full international debut last month, will join the Czech Under 21s during the upcoming international break. The Czech Republic are second in their qualifying group to reach Euro 2012, behind reigning champions Spain.
Sparta Prague have kept up the pressure on leaders Viktoria Plzeň with a 4:1 win over bottom-of-the-table Ústí nad Labem in the final game of the 15th round of the Czech football league. Monday’s result means that Sparta – who are defending champions – remain nine points behind Plzeň at the exact half-way point in the 2010-2011 season. Viktoria Plzeň have never taken the league title and next year is their centenary.
Sparta Prague beat Swiss club Lausanne in their Europa league return match 3:1 on Thursday night to considerably boost their chances of going through to the next round of the competition. Sparta came back from going a goal down early on in the game. Other results in the group also went their way with group leaders CSKA Moscow beating Palermo. Sparta are now second in the group with seven points, trailing CSKA on 12 but ahead of third placed Palermo on three points with two games still to be played.
Ex-ice hockey international Svoboda dies at 41
Prague Uprising: How the last German-held capital fought for freedom
Major new residential and office district to go up in Prague’s Hagibor district
From underground bunkers to “Fire Mountain”: how Prague’s poorest have lived over the centuries
Czech hiking trails mark 130 years