MX23RW : Tuesday, August 3 15:36:12| >> :600:2095529:2095529:
Sep 4, 2020 at 7.45pm UK at Štadión Tehelné pole
Czech RepublicCzech Republic
Schranz (88')
Bozenik (49'), Gyomber (53'), Kucka (75')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Coufal (48'), Dockal (53' pen.), Krmencik (86')
Darida (4')

Preview: Slovakia vs. Czech Republic - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's UEFA Nations League fixture between Slovakia and Czech Republic, including team news and injury news.

Slovakia and Czech Republic go head to head in Bratislava on Friday evening as both nations look to end a 10-month break from action with a win.

With Scotland and Israel completing Group B1, all four teams will know that any dropped points could prove crucial when it comes to promotion and relegation.

Match preview

Czech Republic coach Jaroslav Silhavy before the match against Slovakia in November 2018© Reuters

While Czech Republic are now lacking the high-profile names of years gone by, Jaroslav Silhavy ensured that his nation were still able to qualify for the European Championship for the seventh time in a row.

However, despite their underdog status in that competition, they are regarded as the favourites to progress from Group B2, which would earn promotion to the top tier of the competition.

Although Silhavy will not feel that his job is at risk if they do not finish above Slovakia, Scotland and Israel, he will acknowledge that momentum is everything if they want to make an impact next summer.

As it stands, they have plenty of that after recording a famous win over England as recently as October, denying the Three Lions the chance to qualify with a 100% record.

That performance alone will be enough for Silhavy to have faith in this group of players, but he will want more consistency from a side who have since lost to Northern Ireland and Bulgaria.

While Czech Republic can focus on this competition for the next three months, Slovakia's priority will be on coming through the Euro 2020 playoffs, starting with a game against Republic of Ireland.

Two defeats to Croatia and a failure to beat Wales at home contributed to their downfall with regards to automatic progress, but Pavel Hapal will still believe that his close-knit squad have enough about them to record some important results from now through to November.

Just two wins have come from their last half-a-dozen matches, although Hapal would have also taken heart from a credible draw in a friendly against Paraguay.

Although much responsibility will fall on the shoulders of Marek Hamsik, Hapal will hope that the emergence of young forward Robert Bozenik can help his side move to the next level.

Slovakia form (all competitions): LWDDLW

Czech Republic form (all competitions): LWWLWL

Team News

Newcastle United goalkeeper Martin Dubravka pictured in February 2020© Reuters

Having helped Fulham earn promotion to the Premier League, consideration will be given to Marek Rodak being handed a debut in the absence of the injured Martin Dubravka.

Aside from the Newcastle United stopper, Slovakia are at full strength, with Robert Mak back in contention after serving a one-match suspension.

At a time when he is expected to complete a transfer to Bayer Leverkusen, Patrik Schick will lead the line for Czech Republic.

Barring any late fitness issues, there is not expected to be any surprise selections, with Lukas Masopust likely getting the nod over Michael Krmencík

Slovakia possible starting lineup:
Rodak; Pekarik, Vavro, Skriniar, Hancko; Kucka, Lobotka, Hamsik; Rusnak, Bozenik, Mak

Czech Republic possible starting lineup:
Vaclik; Coufal, Celustka, Brabec, Bonl; Soucek, Kral; Masopust, Darida, Jankto; Schick

SM words green background

We say: Slovakia 1-2 Czech Republic

On the back of qualification for Euro 2020, Czech Republic have to be the marginal favourites here. Slovakia have made home advantage count in their favour in the past, but we are backing a late triumph for the visitors.

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Czech Republic coach Jaroslav Silhavy before the match against Slovakia in November 2018
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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States24282173
Olympics flagRussian Olympic Committee13211852
Great BritainGreat Britain13171343
Today's Olympic highlights header

Tuesday's key events

· Team GB duo Jack Laugher - silver medallist in Rio - and James Heatly take part in the men's 3m springboard semi-final (2am), and will hope to qualify for the final later in the day (7am)

· Two Britons are involved in the women's long jump final, but Abigail Irozuru and Jazmin Sawyers have their work cut out to get a spot on the podium (2.50am)
· Norwegian Karsten Warholm, who broke the world record just last month, goes for gold in the men's 400m hurdles final. USA's Rai Benjamin is expected to be his main challenger (4.20am)
· Great Britain have three representatives in the final of the women's 800m, with Jemma Reekie having perhaps the best chance of a medal (1.25pm)
· A mouth-watering women's 200m final sees Elaine Thompson-Herah go for the prestigious sprint double after claiming the 100m crown. Compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Namibia's Christine Mboma and USA's Gabrielle Thomas are expected to be her main competitors (1.50pm)

· The rescheduled women's skiff 49er FX (4.33am) and men's skiff 49er (5.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races
· Defending champion Giles Scott bids for a second successive gold in the Finn class medal race (6.33am)
· There is another medal chance for Team GB in the mixed Nacra 17 medal race (7.33am)

· Team GB's Joe Fraser takes part in the parallel bars final, kicking off the final day of artistic gymnastics (9am)
· USA superstar Simone Biles, who has been forced to pull out of all of her finals so far, is on the starting list for the beam final as she bids for a fifth Olympic gold (9.50am)

· The men's semi-finals take place, with Mexico taking on Brazil first up (9am)
· The winner of that first semi-final will face either hosts Japan or Spain (2pm)

· Laura Kenny will look to win a third straight Olympic team pursuit gold medal. Team GB take on United States in their heat (7.44am), with the gold medal race later that day (9.26am)
· Laura's husband and fellow Olympic legend Jason Kenny will also look to continue his huge success in the men's team sprint - an event he has won gold in at every Games since 2008. Team GB will first need to get through the men's qualifying (7.58am), with the gold medal race ending the session (9.44am)

· Pat McCormack will be looking to achieve his dream of Olympic gold when he faces Cuba's Roniel Iglesias (11.05am)

> Today's schedule in full
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