Sports News

Miroslav Baranek and Vladimir Smicer, photo: CTK
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In Sports News: Czech first football division has started with Czech international Vladimir Smicer coming back to Slavia after 11 years and one of the two newcomers from Prague seizing victory; in cycling, speed skater Martina Sablikova does not qualify for the World Championship in cycling.

Czech football first division kicked off over the weekend

Miroslav Baranek and Vladimir Smicer, photo: CTK
The first division started at the weekend with seven matches, the remaining one to be played on Monday. In the opening match, Slavia was hosted by Jablonec and managed to gain the full three points after the only goal of the game was scored in 54th minute by Slavia's captain Stanislav Vlcek. The first round saw some interesting events, including the former Czech national team midfielder and Champions League winner Vladimir Smicer coming back to play for Slavia after 11 years abroad. "I try to take advantage of my experience so that I don't run where I am not supposed to. I run to spots where it makes sense, and I think that my experience is quite useful in this. I try not to lose the ball too much, and so on. I definitely believe that I am a much more mature footballer than I was 11 years ago when I played here last."

Bohemians 1905 lose to Ostrava in the first round

Bohemians 1905 - Banik Ostrava, photo: CTK
In the long-expected game of the revived Bohemians 1905 against Banik Ostrava, the home team failed to fulfil their fans' expectations and lost 2:0 to the favoured Ostrava. After the initial goal from the 14th minute, Bohemians could not level up with faster and more precise Moravian footballers and definitely lost their hopes after another goal was scored shortly before the end of the game. The game of Bohemians 1905, promoted to the first division together with their fellow Prague club Viktoria Zizkov, was much attended by fans from both sides.

...while the other newcomer Zizkov achieves first victory

Viktoria Zizkov - Mlada Boleslav, photo: CTK
Viktoria Zizkov marked a surprising win in Mlada Boleslav in their first match after a spectacular shot by the French midfielder Youssef Moughfire. An equalizing goal by Mlada Boleslav in 98th minute was disallowed because of an offside call. In other games of the first round, Teplice's striker Martin Fenin, one of the stars of the recent Under-20 World Cup in Canada, scored twice against the host team of Kladno, and will probably be leaving his club for the German Bundesliga.

Sparta will face Arsenal in 3rd preliminary round of Champions League

Slavia Prague - Zilina, photo: CTK
Sparta Prague, which will kick off for the new season on Monday against Liberec, will face London's Arsenal in the third preliminary round of the Champions League. The English team has Czech midfielder Tomas Rosicky among their midst, which will make it a special treat for Sparta fans as the firm favourite Arsenal will play Tomas Rosicky's former club. Slavia Prague, after a 0:0 draw in Zilina in the opeing game of the Champions League fourth preliminary round, will have to win over Slovakia's champion on Wednesday in Prague to advance to the third round where the winner will stand against Ajax Amsterdam.

In cycling, Matrina Sablikova did not qualify for cycling World Championships

Martina Sablikova, photo: CTK
Two-times world champion in speed-skating Martina Sablikova came third in the cycling time trial held in Zdar nad Sazavou over the weekend as a part of the Czech Championships and did not qualify for the world championships that will be held in Germany in September. After that, Sablikova says she will go back to cycling only as a training method for the winter speed skating season.