Our prediction for this match:
Generali Ceska pojistovna Arena will host Wednesday’s friendly between Czech Republic and Albania, the two teams who meet for the first time ever on the international stage. The Czechs aim to make amends for a heavy 4-0 loss to Italy, and, no doubt, they will give 100% to emerge triumphant in their last friendly before EURO 2020. Since boss Jaroslav Silhavy is going to field the best possible side this time out, home win should be considered.
The Albanians, on the other hand, head into the match following a goalless draw with Wales. Edoardo Reja’s troops are eyeing their third consecutive clean sheet on the international stage, but preventing Czech Republic from scoring in Prague is easier said than done. Both Soucek and Schick return to Czech Repubilc’s starting XI, which is yet another reason why home win should be considered.
Highlighted Player (Tomas Vaclik):
Tomas Vaclik is the Czech Republic international goalkeeper who has been with FC Basel since 2014. Having begun his professional career in Vitkovice, the 27-year-old shot stopper also played for Viktoria Zizkov and Sparta Prague before he moved to Switzerland.
At the beginning of his career Tomas Vaclik draw plenty of attention from all across Europe and has even signed a deal with Dutch side De Graafschap in 2011, which was later rescinded after Vaclik failed his medical and was forced to return to Prague.
During two seasons with the Swiss giants FC Basel, Tomas Vaclik has managed to establish himself as a first-choice goalkeeper averaging 31 appearances per season. He played a massive role in his team’s back-to-back title challenges and has gone to extend his contract with Basel as a reward, a contract that will keep him with the Swiss club until 2021.
Highlighted Team (Albania):
The Albanian national football team has represented the country on international stage since 1946, and it is interesting to note that Albania was one of the founding members of UEFA back in 1954. The Eagles have enjoyed very little success in the 20th century, but they managed to show some improvement at the turn of the century and eventually secured their first ever appearance at a major tournament.
Albania qualified for the Euro 2016 finals as they came second in their qualifying group behind Portugal, taking 14 points from 8 matches, with Italian coach Gianni De Biasi at the helm. The Eagles have never qualified for the World Cup finals in 11 attempts, winning mere 14 of 94 World Cup qualifiers.
Former Lazio defender Lorik Cana has worn the captain’s armband over the last few years and he is Albania’s most capped player, while former Chievo forward Erjon Bogdani still holds the record for most goals for the national team, with 18 strikes in 74 appearances.