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T&T vs Czech Republic (03-Jun-2006).
Sat Jun 3, 2006 17:34

Strong Czechs get final win over T&T.
By: Shaun Fuentes.

A strong Czech Republic team got the better Trinidad & Tobago in their final warm-up match before the World Cup finals. Two goals from Jan Koller and a Pavel Nedved strike eased the Czechs to a 3-0 victory at the Toyota Arena on Saturday evening.
T&T head coach Leo Beenhakker fielded what appeared to be his starting team for the World Cup while Czech coach Karel Bruckner wanted to field his ideal starting 11 for this game, but injuries to Tomas Galasek and Tomas Rosicky forced a reshuffle.
Imposing striker Koller had the first chance in the second minute when he lobbed Kelvin Jack and the ball looked to be on its way into the net before Marvin Andrews cleared off the line.
But neither Andrews nor Jack could do anything four minutes later when Koller made amends for that miss to open the scoring.
Karel Poborsky began the attack with a run into the area from the left, he tried to pass to Nedved, but the ball hit a defender and rebounded to Poborsky, who sent in a precise cross which Koller powered in with a diving header.
The next chance fell to Coventry striker Stern John, who weaved his way through the Czech defence but saw his effort go straight to goalie Petr Cech.
And the visitors were made to pay for spurning that chance in the 22nd minute as Koller turned provider with a pass to Nedved which the skipper finished with a precision shot inside the post.
Trinidad keeper Jack kept the scoreline respectable with two good saves to deny Poborsky and Milan Baros but could do nothing about Koller's second and the Czech Republic's third five minutes from half-time.
With a beautiful, sweeping counter-attack, Nedved sent a through pass to Poborsky, who touched it on to Koller and the Borussia Dortmund striker directed the ball to the net.
There was no respite for the visiting Caribbean side in the second half as wave after wave of Czech attacks came at them and they were lucky to keep the score at 3-0. Their own best effort fell to substitute striker Densill Theobald, who hit a decent shot just over the crossbar.
Bruckner made three changes an hour into the match, and the new line-up took some time to gel, with several passes going astray. But the Czechs still had the game under control, and after Andrews almost netted an own goal when he diverted Nedved's cross over the bar, sub Vratislav Lokvenc went close with a header from a corner.


Czech Republic:

Petr Cech, Zdenek Grygera, David Rozehnal, Tomas Ujfalusi, Marek Jankulovski (Pavel Mares, 79), Karel Poborsky (Jiri Stajner, 61), Jan Polak (Marek Heinz, 61), Jaroslav Plasil, Pavel Nedved (Martin Jiranek, 82), Milan Baros (Libor Sionko, 46), Jan Koller (Vratislav Lokvenc, 61).

Trinidad & Tobago:

Kelvin Jack, Avery John (Atiba Charles, 46), Marvin Andrews, Dennis Lawrence, Chris Birchall (Aurtis Whitley, 46), Cyd Gray, Carlos Edwards (Kenwyne Jones, 69), Collin Samuel, Stern John, Densill Theobald (Anthony Wolfe, 77), Dwight Yorke (capt).
Soca Warriors heads up for official Germany arrival.
By: Shaun Fuentes.

Trinidad and Tobago’s Soca Warriors will keep their heads up and enter Germany with pride and big ambitions a day after its 3-0 defeat to Czech Republic.
This was the message coming from captain Dwight Yorke after his team conceded three first half goals at the Toyota Arena in their final warm up international before its opening 2006 World Cup fixture against Sweden.
The “Soca Warriors” will depart Prague early Sunday morning and will fly through Frankfurt on the way to making an official arrival as a World Cup team in Bremen at around 10am (4am TT time). The team will then journey by luxury bus and escorted by Rotenburg Mayor Detlef Eichinger for about 40 minutes to Rotenburg.
Mayor Detlef Eichinger for about 40 minutes to Rotenburg.
A massive welcome is expected for the team in Rotenburg which will check in at the Landhaus Wachtelhof hotel around 11:30 am.
With Rotenburg virtually transferred to a “Little T&T”, the Mayor will then host an official welcome reception later in the evening at around 6:30pm (12:30 pm) at the City Square.
Looking back at what was a third consecutive defeat for his team, Yorke said it was only obvious to be disappointed but once again he felt the team had no cause for major alarms.
“Obviously it was a disappointing result for us but this is not going to take away too much from us because we have three bigger matches to play in Germany and we will go there tomorrow with all the ambition,” Yorke told TTFF Media shortly after the match in Prague.
“We are still optimistic but we know it’s going to be extremely hard and we know it was always going to be extremely hard. We are not taking that for granted. The one good thing about this result is that it does not count and next Saturday is when it really starts and that’s when it matters.”
When asked whether he felt this was a worthwhile encounter a week before his team faces Sweden, Yorke replied: “I think that is right. The manager said he was the one that prepared the games and this is one he wanted us to have. This is exactly it and one thing we can take from this is that first half we were taught a footballing lesson.”
And should the “Soca Warriors” feel as though England and Sweden might as well start counting their goals:
“I don’t think so. If we think for a moment that England and Sweden are going to beat us 5-0 then we might as well not turn up. What we have to ensure is when we go to play in June 10th, 15th and 20th is that we can give a good account of ourselves,” Yorke added.
In spite of the loss, Beenhakker was not disturbed.
“I was very happy with the game and I will explain why. My players are not used to this way of football, this way in Europe. It’s much more faster and physical. So it was my choice to have very tough games for them versus Slovenia and Czech - one of the best teams in the world actually. So we knew it would be very difficult but I prefer to have the problems on now and at least they have the experience as to what they can expect in the World Cup and I prefer they are surprised now instead of next week after the Sweden match,” he said.
As to how he assessed the match, Beenhakker added “In football it’s all about mistakes and a good team make probably two mistakes in 90 minutes and a weaker team make probably about 25 mistakes. Simply look for the goals, they score it and we prepared the goals. First goal was free kick for us, ball left to right in our own half and we lost the ball, Second goal, lesson number one never as a defender never make short passing in the middle, we did it and 2-0. Lesson number two, as a defender never let a guy escape you in the back.
“The problem is not how good the opponent is. The problem is how good we are and how many mistakes we make and that is the big battle with this team. The question is whether we are good enough to go with the opponents on this level and I can assure you we have learnt enough. Whether it’s good enough well we will find out.”
He doesn’t think today’s scoreline should mean that T&T should forget all about causing an upset or two at the Finals.
“We always have a chance. You never know who to put your money on. Football always has surprises and that’s the beautiful thing about it
And finally, when asked whether he heard about the England 6-0 win over Jamaica, Beenhakker added: “Oh! But come on. This is Jamaica we are talking about against England. England are preparing for the big stage and that result is not in any relation to us and how we will prepare for our matches and how we will play in the World Cup.”
Following the 3-0 loss, there were no major injury worry with midfielder Densill Theobald nursing a knock to the ankle but he will be able to train as early as next week while Cyd Gray suffered slight damage to a finger tissue.

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