Bohemians 1905 brushed aside Mexican outfit Cruz Azul 3-1 in the opening match of The Generali CEE Cup. The Prague based side now sit in a commanding position in Group A after an impressive showing.
Bohemka, as their affectionately known, even had the luxury of missing a second half penalty as Jaroslav Trnka, who scored twice in the game, saw his penalty saved by Jonathan Sanchez in the Mexican goal.
When you travel almost 10,000km to participate in a football tournament you are not there just to take the numbers up, and so it proved as Cruz Azul made all of the early running, taking the game to a apprehensive Bohemians side.
However, the youngsters from Cruz Azul, who had dominated the early exchanges, were left scratching their heads when Bohemians took the lead on 26 minutes. Good work from Tomas Pribryl on the right hand side led to Jaroslav Trnka slamming his team into a 1-0 lead.
Bohemians 1905 made several changes during the break and they caught on the back foot just after the re-start. Josue Hernandez restored parity on 48 minutes to give the Mexican’s hope, but they failed to capitalise as Bohemka’s substitutes, Filip Kucera in particular, made the difference in an exciting, end-to-end second half.
Kucera swung the momentum back in the home sides favour on 79 minutes with a well-placed shot to give his side a 2-1 lead. With Cruz Azul running out of ideas and energy they gave away a debatable penalty when Sanchez clashed with a Bohemians striker.
But Trnka saw his shot expertly saved, nevertheless, he made amends moments later when his 30 yard drive found the back of the net with the aid of a deflection.
The score line reflects harshly on Cruz Azul, who at times played some slick football, but credit must given to the Czech outfit who scored at crucial times in the game and pressed home their advantage.
“I felt our performance was OK but I am not satisfied,” the Cruz Azul coach told Prague.tv “We had a lot of opportunities in the first half but we could not finish them. We need to concentrate on our own game and not adapt our style to our opposition.”
“I was not surprised of the strength of Bohemians as we have played in similar tours before. They played a very good game.” he added.
Three and Easy for Czech and Slovak teams
SK Slovan Bratislava were up next at Satalice and they continued where Bohemians 1905 had left off after beating Sturm Graz by the same score line 3-1.
The Slovaks caught the Austrians cold and raced into two nil inside the opening fifteen minutes. Ďurč and Matejka made the most of a slow start from Graz and they never looked like losing the game from that point.
Ďurč added a third with ten minutes remaining before Gottfried scored a late consolation for the Austrians.
Slavia Praha made it a hat trick of wins for local sides when they disposed of Universitatea Cluj 3-0 in the afternoon kick off at Admira. Oskar Fotr scored a brace in a one sided victory that has fired a warning message to the rest of teams in the competition.
Slavia face FK Sarajevo on Friday 26 July in their group game, with the grand final scheduled from 5:30 p.m. at Viktoria Žižkov on Wednesday 31 July.
For details of the remaining fixtures please visit: www.ceecup.eu
Wednesday 24 July Results:
Bohemians 1905 3 – 1 Cruz Azul
(26′ + 89′ Trnka, 79′ Kucera – 48′ Josue Hernandez)
SK Slovan Bratislava 3 – 1 Sturm Graz 3:1
(7′ Ďurč, 15′ Matejka, 80′ Ďuriš – 86′ Gottfried)
Slavia Praha 3 – 0 Universitatea Cluj
(2′ Sodoma, 46′ + 72′ Fotr)
Ferencvaros – Maccabi Haifa 0:2
(2’Darwis, 12′ Konstantinos)