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The further adventures of Viktoria Plzen

edited August 2011 in Root
For the benefit of those who enjoyed the story of the upstart Czech champions, I'm delighted to record that they are up to their tricks again, this time in the Champions league, and last night they doubled my beer intake, as I was watching them with the sound down while listening to us. 
They had to go into the qualifying rounds, in the second round they stuffed a Moldovan team, in the third round they comprehensively beat Rosenborg Trondheim (1-0 away and 3-1 at home). Last night they were away to FC Copenhagen, experienced group stagers and hot favourites. I thought a 1-1 would be the best they could hope for (just as I thought a draw would be fine at Colchester), but they blew Copenhagen away by breaking all the rules and attacking them second half, to win 3-1. One and a half feet in the group stage for a little club with a salary budget around the same as ours and a stadium like the Withdean without seats.
The stadium is a problem for the Champs League, they are racing to rebuild it , but its nowhere near ready. Against Rosenborg they played with just the main stand open, but next week they will play in Prague at Slavia's stadium. I'll probably go along to see them. I hope they can get most of the redeveloped stadium open in time for the group stage. But they are already close to what for them is a huge cash benefit, and their supporters are in dreamland. 
"You'll Never Drink Alone" :-)


  • keep it coming

    i remember reading what you said about them in the league but when i saw the name of this thread i thought it was some boring old stuff about some famous old czech woman !!

  • Thanks Prague, any players to look out for in the second leg?  I thought they got the breaks, but the third goal was lovely.

    I missed the first installment: what's the story did they just pull off a miracle through good management and a crop of talent hitting at the right time, or is it a cash thing?

  • edited August 2011

    First installment is here if you have the time (does that link work ? if not :

    I'll ask my Viktorka supporting mate to give me a run down on the players to post here, and some analysis of how they got to these giddy heights.

    I'm not sure I fully understand the foundations of their success, but its definitely not a cash thing, it really looks like smart management and organic growth. They have always been one of the best developers of youth talent, both Nedved and Cech started here. The squad is all local (if you include a couple of Slovaks) the only big name signing was Pavel Horvath, a midfielder in the evening of his career with a still talismanic effect. They are more than the sum of their parts - they work tremendously hard, and seem to have no fear. They'll get turned over by the big boys, for sure, but will probably have loads of fun on the way. 
  • Great stuff, PA.  I hope they win it and that you have a fantastic time along the way...I have a soft spot for the Czech people - a great bunch of lads as Father Ted would say!

    ...and as for their delicious beer; there can't be many better ways to enjoy their success, surely?
  • Won't be there tonight because, to my amazement, the Slavia stadium was all sold out by Saturday. Slavia has three times the capacity of their own ground (before the rebuild), and the feeling is that a lot of glory-seekers are going along to put a national context on it. Czechs suffer from Small Country Syndrome. 
    My Viktorka supporting mate supplied some answer to questions above. Firstly, how did it all happen.
    Four years ago they were in deep doo-doo owned by an incompetent mafioso who ran up debts and got them relegated. Businessman Tomas Paclik has steered them out of trouble, back into the Gambrinus league and quietly built them up on a long term vision. Its worth noting that like most clubs Viktorka dont own the stadium (in their case its council owned) so such deep pockets are not needed as in the UK. he obtained a good coach (manager to us) in Pavel Vrba, who believes in high levels of fitness and close fast interplay (both are very evident). The squad is about 50% developed through the youth system, and for the rest they didnt really splash too much cash, cos there isnt any, when you pay £4 to get in! Ill let Lubos describe some of the players to watch for in his own words:

    etrzela           - rapidly fast right forward, always sneaking in the enemy´s territory and passing balls in front of the golie

    Rajtoral           - right defender. Bright and very sharp & strong wall with flashy attacks & centers into the front

    Pilar                - new guy, small. We call him the Pilsner Messi. Fast and skilful. Enormously fast with very good shots

    Bakos              - striker, which is always at the right place. Very clever with good hunt sniffing skills for the goal


    Jiracek             - offensive midfield. Guy with stability supporting the front. Reliable.

    Limbersky       - The under 20 former captain. Huge talent. He somehow didnt reach the sky, but the better it makes him now when he is showing some of his skills in a hidden way.

    Fillo                 - Ambitious guy, which sometimes rocks the sky, sometimes completely burns off. He would need something in the middle…

    So there we are. I'll be settling down with a cold glass of Pilsner in the stifling heat, and am pretty sure they will see themselves through to the group stages. Where they may or may not meet Arsenal.....

  • Great stuff Prague. Like the sound of Pilar!
  • More from Lubos please - that's classic stuff. I'm wondering if BWP counts as the "John Smiths Messi"?

    Is Limbersky Czech for Lisbie? He was always showing off his skills in a hidden way. And maybe Jiracek is Denis Wise in disguise (offensive midfield)?

    As for Bakos I assume that is "Andy Hunt" sniffing skills he is on about?

    Can you get Lubos to watch Charlton and give us his low down?  

    Anyway I hope they progress and I reckon they now have a few more English followers.


  • Excellent stuff - I hope Vik do the business and then go on to stuff the Arse!
  • They are a goal down at half time (still one up overall). Making things hard for themselves, but they are opening Copenhagen up on the flanks and I think they will get another and wrap it up
  • They did the business second half to win 2-1 on the night, 5-2 on aggregate. Pilsner Urquell all round.
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  • Cheers Pa. FC Copenhagen are no pushovers, a bit like Rosenborg. Will monitor their progress.
  • Not sure about the shirt, it looks a bit like a certain team from down the road 
  • Not sure about the shirt, it looks a bit like a certain team from down the road 

    Indeed, when I turned on ESPN this morning I thought what the hell are Palace doing in the Champions League!
  • yes the shirt is a most regrettable new development. Last year it was red with blue shorts.
  • Thanks Prague, great stuff.
  • see they have been drawn in the same group as barca and ac milan. cant be bad!
  • Nice draw for them PA!
  • there'll be a lot of sawdust about as everyone comes out of the woodwork for those ones
  • there'll be a lot of sawdust about as everyone comes out of the woodwork for those ones
    yes funny you should say that, I already had my brother in law on the blower, asking me about using my VP connections to get tickets for the Barca game.This from a man who normally will only go to see Slavia live. The ice hockey, that is!

    Looks like they will play again at Eden, Slavia's stadium, at least for Barca. The capacity is only 20,000. Seeing as they sold it out five days before for the previous game, I think the chance of me getting a ticket for this are zero. I fancy them to beat the Belorussian side and finish third, but I fear for them against Barca and Milan. There is hardly any European experience in their team.

    But they don't care. They are already delirious at getting this far. I wouldnt be surprised if they go to Barca and Milan and attack them both, because they have nothing to lose and its the style that suits them best. They'll go down 6-2 or similar in both.
  • Am I the only one who every time I see the thread title think it's about the exploits of some Eastern European super model ?
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  • Continue tonight in the group stage, at "home" to BATE Borisov of Belarus.

    Hoping for another win double, as when i listened to us beating Bury while watching Viktorka stuff Copenhagen a few weeks ago.

    If you are interested, Soccernet have a very good guide to them here. 

    No chance of going. The tickets went like wildfire. Never seen anything like it here, in the past UCL games involving Sparta or Slavia were pretty much pay on the night. And this all in Slavia's much larger stadium as they still haven't got certificates from UEFA for their stadium rebuild.

    Realistically, 3rd place and therefore more fun in the Europa League is the best they can aim for. Very glad they start with this, rather than a battering at Barca or Milan. They have enough to see this lot off tonight and get a good start

  • I tell you PA, they'd better.  I've included them in my accumulator to win by more than a goal.

  • I tell you PA, they'd better.  I've included them in my accumulator to win by more than a goal.
    Gulp! And have you got Charlton in your accumulator too?
  • Take it from an inveterate gambler, never play your team or the the teams you hate.  Bets are inevitably biased.  This time i've got the Plzen (-1) with
    Zenit St.Petersburg, Malaga (-1) - got that one already -  FC Copenhagen, Brugge (-1), and Porto not to win - tricky one that.  Only one error allowed.
    If the Plzen bet wins, I'll be owing you a couple of Plzens.
  • Viktoria ahead with the last move of the first half. Good goal but they struggled to impose themselves on a decent opposition
  • Arse. Borisov equalised. Viktorka have switched it around and responded well.
  • But they faded, and the game petered out which doesnt often happen with Viktorka. But they are a good away team and can beat this lot in the away game.
  • Great read, keep us updated with their results!
  • facing TWO nervous away games tonight. Once again, listening to the Charlton game while watching Viktoria. Tonight they are in Milan. If I get a draw out of both games I will be very happy, but of the two I reckon Charlton are more likely to get it. Two away wins and I will run naked down the street and back with a bottle of Pilsner Urquell in my hand.

    They are taking 4,000 to Milan, which i reckon is pretty impressive for a club with a capacity of 7,500 before the extension work started, and where most of the fans take home £500 or less/month.
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Roland Out!