National Teams

Czechs hit seven past mediocre Malta

Published: 07-06-2024 19:59
CZE MLT 04.jpg
CZE MLT 02.jpg
CZE MLT 05.jpg

07.06.2024, Das Goldberg Stadion, Grödig, Austria

(HT 2-0)

1-0 Barak, pen, 6, 2-0 Chytil 44, 3-0 D.Jurasek 47, 4-0 Chytil 58, 2-1 P.Mbong 59, 5-1 Lingr 71, 6-1 M.Jurasek 86, 7-1 Cerny 89.

Malta suffered a heavy defeat earlier this evening in an off-season Friendly against the Czech Republic, Euro 2024 participants, played in Austria close to Salzburg. The Czechs, placed at the Euro 2024 in Group F with Portugal, Turkey, and Georgia, were very effective and punished each Maltese defensive error with a goal. With already 4-1 down, Malta were unjustly denied a goal after a non-existing Paul Mbong off-side situation. However, the average performance of Malta was, specially after the break, uninspiring. 

Malta coach Michele Marcolini had to do without Malta footballer of the year Luke Montebello, USA based Yannick Yankam and Floriana defender Carlo Zammit-Lonardelli, who did not fly out with the team due to injuries. Ryan Camenzuli and Teddy Teuma returned into the starting XI, their first appearance this year in the national team as both suffered injuries in March when Malta obtained satisfying results in two Friendlies, a positive 2-2 against Slovakia and a hard-earned goalless draw with Belarus.

After the Czechs survived an early scare with an off-target Kemar Reid attempt, they were awarded a penalty on six minutes when David Jurasek’s cross bounced off Steve Borg’s arm. Captain Antonin Barak made no mistake from 11-meters to give his side the most perfect start. Three minutes later, Matthew Guillaumier’s attempt from a short Teuma corner ended up wide.

As expected, the Czechs controlled the match and on 19 minutes, Bonello tipped a Tomas Chory header over the bar for a corner. Minutes later, the towering Chory could have already doubled but his header at the second post was eventually cleared.

From the half hour mark onwards, Malta settled down well with Teuma only millimetres away from equalising after intercepting a Czech pass in their own half on 37 minutes, advancing towards the box but his grounder failed to find the net. The Maltese grew in confidence and forced the Czechs into numerous fouls on especially Reid and Paul Mbong. Despite these positive 15 minutes, just before half-time, the Czechs doubled through a close-range Mojmir Chytil effort, who could slot home unmarked from a Vladimir Coufal pass.

The Czechs drew first blood immediately after the change of ends with David Jurasek beautifully bending home a shot from the edge of the area, beating Bonello for a third time. On 55 minutes, Paul Mbong was sent through by Teuma with Coufal seemingly pushing the Birkirkara striker down in the box but the referee saw nothing wrong. Three minutes later on the other side, the unmarked Chytil headed home the Czechs’ fourth from a Coufal cross. Malta immediately replied however, when Zach Muscat passed towards Paul Mbong who caught the Czech defence napping, rounding substitute goalkeeper Vitezslav Jaros and shooting low into the empty net.

On 67 minutes, Malta were harshly undone when a second goal by Paul Mbong was incorrectly disallowed for a non-existing off-side situation, a goal which should have stand. Instead, on 71 minutes, the Czechs scored their fifth when a left-footer by Matej Jurasek was inadequately cleared by Bonello with another substitute, Ondrej Lingr, having the easiest of tasks to tap home from practically the goal-line. On 84 minutes, Malta were reduced to ten when Joseph Mbong foolishly retaliated on a foul by substitute Lukas Cerv, receiving a straight red. In the dying minutes the Czechs added two more through substitutes Matej Jurasek and Vaclav Czerny to provide the Maltese with a painful defeat.

Next Tuesday, Malta will close their Austrian training camp with another Friendly against Greece. Kick off will be at 18h at the same venue.

Czech Republic
Matej Kovar (Vitezslav Jaros 46), Martin Vitik, Robin Hranac, David Zima, Michal Sadilek, Vladimir Coufal (Tomas Vlck 63), David Jurasek (Matej Jurasek 63), Antonin Barak (Ondrej Lingr 56), Pavel Sulc, Tomas Chory (Vaclav Cerny 63), Mojmir Chytil (Lukas Cerv 79)
Coach: Ivan Hasek

Henry Bonello, Jean Borg, Enrico Pepe (Zach Muscat 49), Steve Borg (Kurt Shaw 77), Ryan Camenzuli (Juan Corbalan 69), Joseph Mbong, Steve Pisani (Matias Garcia 69), Matthew Guillaumier, Teddy Teuma (Jake Grech 77), Paul Mbong, Kemar Reid (Alex Satariano 46)
Coach: Michele Marcolini

Stefan Ebner (Austria)

Images copyright Domenic Aquilina