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Mazuch hopes Belarus bear brunt of riled Czechs

Published: Friday 24 June 2011, 16.00CET
Ondřej Mazuch said he had "never been as angry" as after the Czechs' semi-final loss, but believes the squad's clear-the-air talks will serve them well in Saturday's Olympic play-off.
by Ian Holyman
from Aalborg
Mazuch hopes Belarus bear brunt of riled Czechs
Ondřej Mazuch wants the Czechs to show their true potential ©Action Images

Tournament statistics

Czech RepublicBelarus

Goals scored4
 
5
Attempts on target13
 
12
Attempts off target29
 
22
Corners21
 
19
Fouls committed125
 
83
Yellow cards16
 
17
Red Cards1
 
1

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Published: Friday 24 June 2011, 16.00CET

Mazuch hopes Belarus bear brunt of riled Czechs

Ondřej Mazuch said he had "never been as angry" as after the Czechs' semi-final loss, but believes the squad's clear-the-air talks will serve them well in Saturday's Olympic play-off.

Ondřej Mazuch hopes the Czech squad's frank discussion following their semi-final loss will provoke an improved performance in Saturday's Olympic play-off with Belarus in Aalborg.

We hadn't lost for two years, but we've had moments here at this tournament where nothing has worked
Ondřej Mazuch
The semi-final is in the past. We don't care about that, even if it was painful loss. We are still in the running for the Olympics
Lukáš Vácha

The RSC Anderlecht defender left the pitch in Herning on Wednesday furious over his team's inability to show their true potential so far in the tournament. However, Mazuch believes an impassioned debate that took place in the immediate aftermath of their 1-0 extra-time defeat by Switzerland will serve the squad well.

"I spoke out in the dressing room after the semi-final as I felt it was necessary. We can't just smile and act like nothing happened and say the next game will be better," said the centre-back, who is one of the squad's most experienced members with 25 appearances at this level. "I have never been so angry as after Wednesday's game.

"That was our fourth game in the tournament and we haven't played well so far," he continued. "That is a warning. I said my peace and the other guys supported me. That was positive – we showed that nobody is happy with the way in which we've performed. I hope it will help us for the Belarus game."

The 1-0 loss at the hands of the Swiss compounded the frustration felt by Jakub Dovalil's men following their indifferent form in the group stage. The nervy finish in the opening win against Ukraine was followed by a one-sided defeat by Spain while only two late goals against England took the Czechs into the last four.

"We were fortunate to get out of the group. We played a good half against England and 20 minutes against Ukraine. It's better not to talk about Spain," conceded Mazuch, whose nation had come to Denmark among the pre-tournament favourites after emerging from qualifying unbeaten.

"We beat Germany [in qualifying], and had a lot of chances against the Netherlands and France too [in friendlies before the finals]. We hadn't lost for two years, but we've had moments here at this tournament where nothing has worked."

The feeling of disappointment would be soothed significantly, however, should Dovalil's men secure a spot at the Olympics. Midfielder Lukáš Vácha, who played at right-back in the Switzerland game, added: "The semi-final is in the past. We don't care about that, even if it was painful loss. We are still in the running for the Olympics, and that was our main target before the tournament."

Last updated: 24/06/11 22.52CET

http://www.uefa.com/under21/season=2011/matches/round=2000004/match=2003418/prematch/focus/index.html#mazuch+hopes+fury+bears+fruit

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