Our football match prediction:
Viktoria Plzen failed to book their place in the Champions League play-offs, but they are on the right track to qualify for the Europa League group stages. The Czech side came from behind to beat AEK Larnaca (3-1) in the first leg of the Europa League play-offs and they are certainly brimming with confidence ahead of the trip to Cyprus. AEK Larnaca did well to eliminate Dinamo Minsk in the third qualifying round, but they obviously have a much bigger fish to fry in the two-legged tie against Plzen. The Cypriotes are eyeing their fourth consecutive win at home in the Europa League qualifiers and that is certainly giving fans a reason for optimism ahead of the visit of the Czech side. However, given the quality of Pavel Vrba’s team, we do not believe that the hosts are going to record a big win over Viktorka in Thursday’s football game.
Highlighted Player (Nacho Cases):
After making 71 appearances for Sporting B between 2005 and 2011, Nacho Cases started playing for the first team on 9 January 2011, making his debut in a 1-1 draw with Racing Santander. The Spanish footballer plays as a midfielder and he was born on 22 December, 1987 in Gijon. He played probably the best match of his career against Real Madrid at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on 2 April, 2011 as he provided an assist for Miguel de las Cuevas, who scored the winner ten minutes before the end (1-0). Nacho Cases used to play for the like of Codema and Revillagigedo during his youth career, but he played for his current club as a boy as well. Cases was with his family in Paris during terror attacks in November 2011 and the Spanish embassy helped him return to his homeland. The midfielder scored one goal in 24 league appearances for Sporting Gijon in the 2015/2016 La Liga campaign.
Highlighted Team (Viktoria Plzen):
Despite being founded in 1911, Viktoria Plzen only won their first Czech First League trophy in 2011, with the team finishing the season just one point clear of Sparta Prague. The Viktorka continued to play an important role in Czech football and five years later they clinched their fourth domestic trophy. Plzen impressed in the 2015/2016 Czech First League, finishing the season seven points above second-placed Sparta Prague. In the 2009/2010 season the team won their first ever Czech Cup trophy, beating Jablonec in the title game. The Viktorka participated in the 2013/2014 Champions League group stages, but they failed to record a good result in the elite competition, picking up just three from possible 18 points in Group D. Doosan Arena is the home ground of Viktoria Plzen and the capacity of the stadium is 11 700. The venue was opened in 1955 and it was renovated twice (2003 and 2011). The likes of Miroslav Koubek, Pavel Vrba, Michal Bilek, Zdenek Michalek, Jaroslav Dockal, Milan Sip and Antonin Dvorak are some of the notable footballers who player for the club in the past.