Three Czech football teams have been drawn opponents for Europa League’s final qualification round. Sparta Prague will play Netherland’s Feyernoord Rotterdam, Viktoria Plzeň will face KSC Lokeren from Belgium while Czech champions Liberec who failed to qualify for the Champions League are set to play Ukraine’s Dnepropetrovsk. The first leg of the play-offs is scheduled for August 23, the second a week later.
Football club Mladá Boleslav – after winning two in a row in second round action in the Europa League, lost its opening match of the new season in the Czech league, 1:0 against Teplice. In other action, Viktoria Plzeň defeated Hradec Kralové 3:0. Defending champions Liberec also began with a strong win: 4:0 over Příbram. The first round wraps-up later on Monday with Slavia facing Jihlava.
In this week’s Sports News: Veselý shuns the Czech national team to focus on the NBA; Slavia draws 3-3 in pre-season friendly; hurdles athlete Hejnová returns to form at the Diamond League tournament; cancer survivor Koukal will carry the Olympic flag in London and Milan Baroš rejects a pay cut and stays at Galatasaray.
Czech football clubs Viktoria Plzeň and FK Mladá Boleslav won the first leg of the Europa League’s second qualification round. Plzeň beat Metalurg Rustavi 3:1 in Georgia on Thursday while Mladá Boleslav defeated Iceland’s Thor Akureyri 3:0. The second leg fixtures are scheduled for next week. Meanwhile, Czech football champions Liberec beat Shakhter Karagandy 1:0 in the Champions League’s second qualification round on Wednesday; Friday’s draw in Nyon determined that if Liberec advance, they will face Romania’s FC Cluj in the third qualification round.
Czech football club Viktoria Plzeň face Georgia’s Metalurgi Rustavi on Thursday evening in the second qualifying round of UEFA’s Europa League. The match takes places in Tbilisi and news website idnes reported that Rustavi players actually turned up to watch Plzeň players train. Plzeň finished third in the Czech league last season, a year after winning the Czech League for the first time.
In Sports News: Fans, players mark the 50th anniversary of Czechoslovakia’s second-place finish at the 1962 World Cup; Pirlo emulates Panenka with a cheeky chip against England at EURO 2012; Czech football champions Liberec will face Kazakhstan’s Shakhter Karagandy in the 2nd qualifying round of the Champions League; Kvitová begins defence of Wimbledon title.
The Czech national team on Thursday lost to quarter final opponent Portugal after Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo scored the only goal of the game in the 79th minute. Portugal is now the first side to enter the semi-finals. The Czech team put up a strong defense throughout the first half of the game, but were no match for Portugal.They barely tested the Portuguese defence and most of the game took place in their half. Goalkeeper Petr Čech, who playsfor Chelsea, delivered a spectacular performance in the goal but was not able to hold the decisive shot. The Czech team played without its captain Tomáš Rosický, who was still recovering from an Achilles tendon injury.
Czech footballer Milan Baroš announced that Thursday’s match was his last for the country’s national team. There had been speculation that the 30-year-old was ready to quit the national team following severe criticism for his performance especially against Russia, which beat the Czech Republic 4:1 in the EURO 2012 opening match. The forward has played a total of 93 matches for the national team and scored 41 goals during that time.
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