Prague (AFP) – Players from Europa League sensation Slavia Prague form the backbone of a Czech Republic team facing England and Brazil later this month, a final nomination showed Monday.
The Czechs will take on England in a Euro 2020 qualifier at Wembley on Friday before hosting Brazil in a friendly in Prague on March 26.
Last Thursday, Slavia stunned five-time champions Sevilla 4-3 in extra time at home to advance to the last eight in the Europa League following a 2-2 draw in Spain.
“Slavia are on a roll, playing European cups, doing a great job representing the country,” national team coach Jaroslav Silhavy told the public Czech Television.
The current Czech top flight leaders, who are next facing Chelsea in the Europa League, provided seven players for the team eyeing its seventh straight Euro appearance.
These include 20-year-old defensive midfielder Alex Kral, a national team newcomer, as well as 33-year-old striker Milan Skoda, the oldest player on the Czech Republic team.
Silhavy, a former Slavia player and coach who took the Czech Republic team over last September, has also called up Burnley midfielder Matej Vydra and Bristol City defender Tomas Kalas.
“We would like to stick to our offensive style,” said Silhavy.
“I admit there will be more stress on defence in these two games than before, but you can’t park the bus for 90 minutes even against teams like England and Brazil.”
“The England game is more important, we’re playing for points.”
“The Brazil game will be about prestige and comparison. That will be a feast for us.”
Czech Republic squad:
Goalkeepers: Jiri Pavlenka (Bremen/GER), Tomas Koubek (Rennes/FRA), Tomas Vaclik (Sevilla/ESP)
Defenders: Ondrej Celustka (Antalyaspor/TUR), Theo Gebre Selassie (Bremen/GER), Filip Novak (Trabzonspor/TUR), Pavel Kaderabek (Hoffenheim/GER), Ondrej Kudela (Slavia Prague), Tomas Kalas (Bristol City/ENG), Marek Suchy (Basel/SUI), Vladimir Coufal (Slavia Prague)
Midfielders: Jakub Jankto (Sampdoria/ITA), Tomas Soucek (Slavia Prague), Lukas Masopust (Slavia Prague), Borek Dockal (Sparta Prague), David Pavelka (Kasimpasa/TUR), Alex Kral (Slavia Prague), Jaromir Zmrhal (Slavia Prague), Matej Vydra (Burnley/ENG), Vladimir Darida (Hertha/GER), Martin Frydek (Sparta Prague)
Strikers: Patrik Schick (Roma/ITA), Milan Skoda (Slavia Prague)
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