We’re predicted to finish 2nd in the league, just behind defending champions Viktoria Plzen and just ahead of rivals Sparta Praha. Fellow Prague clubs Dukla and Bohemians are predicted to stay up, while both newly-promoted clubs (ignore the markers on Sigma and Baník) are projected to be in relegation danger.
A rip-roaring set of friendlies… our U19s really didn’t stand a chance, and neither did any of the other teams we faced. In the highest-profile fixture, we beat our Croatian affiliates Hajduk Split 3-1, which is a decent sign for our Champions League qualifying campaign later this summer. Zmrhal, Olayinka, and Traoré all impressed.
Lukas Masopust got our scoring for the season off the mark after just five minutes against newly-promoted Pribram, flicking in a header from Josef Husbauer’s corner delivery. We waited until later in the second half to pad our lead, when a push on Peter Olayinka in the box prompted a VAR review and penalty decision by the referee, which Husbauer lifted into the top-left corner for 2-0. We added a third and iced the three points in stoppage time in style, as Tomas Soucek speared Masopust’s cutback into the top-left from the edge of the area. Couldn’t ask for a better first game.
We faced our first Prague opposition in Bohemians at home, and despite a dire game, we came away with another three points. Our goal came with pretty much our first clear opportunity of the game, as a push on Miroslav Stoch in the box gave us our second penalty in as many games, to which Husbauer again stepped up and slotted home. We had a couple of chances to put Bohemians to the sword in the second half, and a potential second penalty was denied by VAR, but this ended up a comfortable 1-0 victory, as our opponents offered nothing in attack.