In football, Mladá Boleslav’s hopes of European competition disappeared in spite of a 1:0 away win at Strömsgodset on Thursday night. After the 1:2 home defeat a week earlier, the Czech team go out on away goals in the prequalifying competition for the Europa League. The sole goal of the match was scored in the 31st minute by Aleš Čermák, who is on loan from Sparta Prague since the summer. The Czech team failed to capitalise on their few other chances in the game.
Goalkeeper Petr Čech has made his debut between the posts for Arsenal in the final of a warm-up pre-season tournament in Singapore. Čech played in the final of the Barclay Asia Trophy against fellow Premier League team Everton. Arsenal won 3:1 with the final goal a consolation for the Merseyside team. Čech said after the game that he knew he would be the focus of attention and was pleased to have put in a good performance.
League champions Viktoria Plzeň claimed their first trophy of the new football season by winning the Super Cup against last season’s cup winning team, Slovan Liberec. Plzeň had most of the early pressure and took a two goal lead through Tomáš Hořava and Daniel Kolář. Slovan cut the lead in the 52nd minute with a strike by Lukáš Bátošák, his first game for the club on his debut.
In football, Czech midfielder Vladimír Darida is moving to top German league club Hetha Berlin from Freiburg, which was relegated to the second division at the end of last season. Terms between the two clubs have been agreed but a final deal for the four year contract has still to be signed, Darida’s agent confirmed. The 25 year old player had indicated that he did not want to play second division football, sparking interest from several top German clubs. Darida signed for Freiburg from Viktoria Plzeň two years ago.
Czech league champions Viktoria Plzeň will face the winner of a tie between Israeli club Maccabi Tel Aviv and Maltese club Hibernians in the third pre-qualifying round of football's Champions League. Last season’s league runners-up, Sparta Prague will face CSKA Moscow, which were second in the Russian league last season. The first matches will be played on July 28 and 29 with the return leg on 4 and 5 August. The draw was made in Nyon, Switzerland, on Friday.
In football, Mladá Boleslav complicated its further progress in qualifying for the Europa League following a 1:2 home defeat against Norway’s Strömsgodset. The Czech team went ahead with a strike from distance by midfielder Daniel Bartl but the visitors pulled back within five minutes. And Strömsgodset took a deserved win in the second pre-qualifying round match five minutes before the final whistle.
The Czech soccer captain Tomáš Rosický will miss the start of next season due to injury, the manager of his club Arsenal, Arsene Wenger, told journalists. The midfielder, who is 34, was injured in a Euro 2016 qualifier between the Czech Republic and Iceland last month and will be out for four to five more weeks. There has been speculation that his former club Sparta Prague are trying to secure a deal for Rosický, who has signed a one-year contract extension with Arsenal but is not a regular starter with the English Premier League side.
In football, the Czech Republic looks like it will be placed in a second group of European countries for the qualifying draw for the 2018 World Cup due to be hosted by Russia. The placing of countries into ‘baskets’ for the draw should be made according to countries’ current FIFA rankings, but a final decision still has to be made. That would place the Czech Republic in the draw alongside France, Italy, Switzerland, Slovakia, Austria, Iceland, Denmark, and Bosnia Hercegovina, meaning that they would not face these countries in the qualification groups. The draw should take place on July 25.
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