Football Football

Rosicky won’t start quarter-final


PRAGUE, Czech Republic, June 21 – Czech Republic playmaker Tomas Rosicky will definitely not start the Euro 2012 quarter-final against Portugal later on Thursday, team manager Vladimir Smicer told Czech TV.

Rosicky, 31, has been struggling to be fit in time after suffering an inflamed Achilles tendon in the first-half of the 2-1 group stage win over Greece which saw him miss the final Group A game, the 1-0 win over co-hosts Poland.

However, whilst he was able to train on Wednesday for the first time in over a week after undergoing two days of treatment in Prague, Smicer said his team-mate from the flair-filled Euro 2004 side was not fit enough to start.

“It is certain that Tomas will not play from the start,” he told Czech public TV channel CT.

However, Arsenal star Rosicky, who has been plagued by injuries throughout his career, one of which forced him to miss Euro 2008, will be on the substitutes’ bench and could get some playing time, according to Smicer.

The quarter-final will be the third meeting between the two sides in five Euros, both winning one apiece, though, the Czechs won the most important one the 1996 quarter-final 1-0 on their way to losing to Germany in the final.