Czechs ready for one little mistake to be decisive against Denmark

·2-min read
Euro 2020 - Czech Republic Training

BAKU (Reuters) - Czech Republic expect a tight match against Denmark which can be decided by one small mistake when they meet in Saturday's Euro 2020 quarter-final, coach Jaroslav Silhavy said on Friday.

The Czechs are embracing their underdog status, according to team captain Vladimir Darida, who will be back from injury. But they are aiming to take advantage of their first quarter-final appearance since 2012.

Darida's return - along with left-back Jan Boril coming back after a suspension - leaves coach Silhavy with tough choices on whether to tweak a squad that looked crisp in stunning favoured Netherlands 2-0 in their last-16 match.

"It's not simple but I believe we will make the right choice," Silhavy said about the lineup on Friday, adding he was still undecided and would weigh things after a final training session.

The Czechs are facing a fired-up Denmark team, scoring four or more goals in consecutive matches - the first time that has happened in European Championship history.

The Danes have ridden a wave of emotion and support into the quarter-finals since Christian Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest in their opening match.

"One small mistake can decide the match flow in a moment," Silhavy said. "They have many good players in their team that can decide a match, but I believe we will be able to take advantage of any of their mistakes.

"I think it will be a very even match, and competitive, and the little things will be decisive."

The Czechs advanced last Sunday with a pair of second-half goals, the first from defender Tomas Holes before he then set up Patrik Schick for the second.

Schick has notched four goals in Euro 2020, behind Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo on five. He is one short of the Czech record for top scorer in a tournament.

He is one short of the Czech record for top scorer in a tournament, held by Milan Baros in Euro 2004 where the Czechs beat Denmark 3-0 in the quarter-finals before losing to eventual winners Greece in the last four.

Darida and Silhavy avoided drawing any parallels with this year's campaign, though with the game being played in Baku they will be without a strong turnout of their fans who came to the Netherlands game in Budapest.

"We're sorry the atmosphere will not be like in the last game but there is nothing much we can do about that," Darida said. "We need to be ready and we need to fully concentrate on this game."

The winners of Saturday's match will meet either England or Ukraine in the semi-final at Wembley on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Jason Hovet in Prague; Editing by Christian Radnedge)