FC Slovan Liberec | Report: Sparta - Liberec 1:1
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Fortuna League, Round 14: Sparta Praha – Slovan Liberec 1:1

Derek OBrien
Slovan ended the calendar year 2020 and the autumn part of FORTUNA:LIGA with a match at Letná against Prague´s Sparta. In the first half, two controversial penalties were imposed, but Filip Nguyen held Slovan in it and Kamso Mara scored at the other end. Early in the second half, Lukáš Juliš levelled the scores with his head. Thus, Slovan said goodbye to 2020 with a 1-1 draw.
14.kolo, Tuesday 22.12.2020, 17:00
Sparta Sparta
Sparta: Nita - Sáček, Čelůstka (7. Polidar), Hancko, Hanousek - Souček, Pavelka - Vindheim (67. Karlsson), Dočkal (C), Plavšić - Juliš
Liberec: Nguyen - Koscelník, Jugas, Kačaraba, Mikula (C) - Sadílek, Mara - Pešek, Matoušek (37. Beran - 82. Rondić), Mosquera - Jusúf Hilál (54. Rabušic)
Goals: 48. Juliš - 33. Mara (pen.). Yellow cards: 39. Juliš, 62. Dočkal, 72. Souček, 75. Pavelka - 4. Jusúf Hilál, 27. Kačaraba, 57. Sadílek, 57. coach Hoftych. Rozhodčí: E. Marek - J. Moláček, J. Hrabovský | VAR: A. Denev | AVAR: P. Caletka.


Right at the beginning, after a collision with his teammate Hanck, the home defender Čelůstka was injured and had to leave. He was replaced by the young Matěj Polidar. Immediately, Jusúf Hilál saw a strict yellow card in the fourth minute. In the eighth minute, Lukáš Juliš fired just above the league's top scorer. Mosquera got Liberec’s first chance, but from an angle and outside the area, he missed. A moment later, Yusuf tried a free kick from a distance but he also missed the target. After an errant Sparta pass, Kamso Mara had a huge chance, but the Guinean midfielder did not bury his attempt.

In the 24th minute, Plavšić ran past Koscelník and with his shot pass from 6 yards out, created some anxious moments before, finally, the ball was cleared to safety. Three minutes later, Hancko slipped into the area and Taras Kačaraba stepped lightly on his ankle while stepping on inertia, and after a video review, referee Emanuel Marek called for a penalty. In addition, our keeper was shown a yellow card for objection to the call. But after all that, Filip Nguyen denied Dočkal's shot from the dot! At the other end, Pešek fired a hard blow to the head of the Spartan goalkeeper Nita. Michal Sáček then took the ball from Nita's gloves into his hands, when the game had not yet been interrupted and Slovan also received an unexpected penalty for a hand ball. The traditional executor Kamso Mara made no mistake and sent Liberec into the lead 1-0 in the 33rd minute.

Unfortunately, a moment later, Jan Matoušek was also injured, replaced by Michal Beran. Jusúf Hilál unleashed a swerving effort from the right that the visitors' keeper did well to tip wide. Nita caught his attempt in the middle of the goal. After two penalties, emotions flared up and several infractions were committed by both teams. The referee did not have an easy job at all. A moment before the break, Mara blocked Juliš's shot, and Nguyen immediately kicked off Vindheim's attempt from an angle. At the set time of the first half, Mosquera was already circling Nita and could clear the ball into the empty goal when the assistant raised his flag upwards. Offside. That was all in the first half.

The entry into the second half of the Slavs did not work out at all. Kačaraba increased the lead to 1-1 as Lukáš Juliš scored from the penalty spot, putting the ball in near the top left corner. Airmen continued to be more active. The centers flew into the lime from both sides, but the Liberec defence knew how to deal with them so far. After an hour of play, he jumped to the center from the corner of Jugas. But Nita caught his head under the crossbar. The second half did not have such a gradient as the first. The game was smoother, but the focus was mostly among the limes. In the 65th minute, Polidar tried to change. But Nguyen pulled his center from the air.

A few minutes later, Jugas also shone at the other end of the field as he headed the ball in front of the advancing Juliš, who was already staring at an empty goal. After 72 minutes, the Liberec team fell to Součka, who drove hard into Mosquera after the ball was played. Our team gradually built up pressure and forced several corners, but were unable to convert. Twelve minutes before full time, Koscelník took a surprising but inaccurate shot, earning a rebuke from his teammates for not concentrating in front of the goal.

Coach Hoftych sensed a chance and sent Imad Rondić in for Rabušic for the last 10 minutes. Jhon Mosquera was very active in the last phase of the match, but unfortunately, the agile Colombian was unable to get a good shot away. At the end of the match, it was Sparta who turned on the pressure, but Nguyen was equal to the challenge. In the dying seconds, Rabušic had the winning goal on his foot, but Hanousek stepped in front of his shot and ended the match with a great defensive play. Slovan thus earned a 1-1 draw at Letná in a scrappy match.

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