Czech Republic captain Tomáš Ujfaluši insists his side are capable of beating Turkey without recourse to a penalty shoot-out in their Group A decider in Geneva.
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Czech Republic captain Tomáš Ujfaluši insists there should be no need for penalties to decide the runners-up spot in Group A as his side target the win against Turkey that would take them into the quarter-finals.
The two teams are level on points, goal difference and goals scored after two matches, and should they draw at the Stade de Genève, a shoot-out will determine who advances alongside Portugal. Although the Czechs lost 3-1 to the group leaders on Wednesday, Ujfaluši is taking strength from their performance and expects further improvement against Turkey on Sunday. "The whole team really believes we can win the game in 90 minutes," he said. "We have got better as the tournament has progressed and we're feeling good in training. We know penalties are looming so we'll be prepared if it comes to that, but we're hoping we'll already have done the hard work in the 90 minutes."
The Czech Republic looked capable of claiming a point in midweek before Cristiano Ronaldo's strike midway through the second half turned the match Portugal's way. Their third in added time from Ricardo Quaresma put a sheen on the scoreline that was hard on Karel Brückner's men, but could have a telling impact on the group table. "The result apart, we were fairly happy with our display against Portugal," said the 30-year-old, newly signed by Club Atlético de Madrid. "We were strong in the first half but, in the end, we were beaten by a great team. However, I don't think we should prepare for Turkey the same way because we're coming up against different opponents with a different style and different tactics. The fact is, we just need to win. Whether we win in 90 minutes or in a shoot-out, we don't care. We just want to make sure the Czech Republic get into the last eight."
Not that the former ACF Fiorentina man, who helped to shut out Switzerland in a 1-0 victory in the tournament's opening game, will feel any added pressure in Geneva. "The whole squad play in high-pressure leagues and have played in winner-take-all matches so I'm sure we'll make it to the quarter-finals. We have to make sure our defence is perfect and operating on the same wavelength, because we know this is one of our strengths and we will try to be as good as in the Portugal game. We are all excited about the game and hoping we will be celebrating."