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Lafata strikes twice as Sparta down Slovan

AC Sparta Praha 4-0 ŠK Slovan Bratislava
David Lafata took his tally to five in four Group I games, with his side securing another easy win against their one-time Czechoslovak rivals.

Sparta's Jakub Brabec confronts Slovan's Lester Peltier
Sparta's Jakub Brabec confronts Slovan's Lester Peltier ©AFP/Getty Images

Sparta level on points with SSC Napoli at the top of Group I
David Lafata scores twice to take his group stage tally to five
Czech side on five-game European winning streak at home   
Sides' first Prague meeting since break-up of Czechoslovakia 
Next games: Sparta Praha v Napoli, Slovan Bratislava v Young Boys (27 November)

In-form AC Sparta Praha are level with SSC Napoli at the Group I summit following a 4-0 win against ŠK Slovan Bratislava in Prague.

"Small country – great club" reads the lettering on a mosaic at the Stadion Letná in Prague, and the hosts were true to that proud spirit as they earned their third successive Group I win. David Lafata struck twice – his fourth and fifth in the group stage this term – either side of strikes from Ladislav Krejčí and Costa Nhamoinesu.

Slovan had the first attempts on goal, Richard Lásik and Lester Peltiertesting home custodian David Bičík, but Vítězslav Lavička's side were soon on the offensive, racing into a 2-0 lead inside 32 minutes. Lafata scored the opener despite pressure from Kristián Kolčák, and three minutes later, Krejčí doubled the lead – latching on to Marek Matějovský's through ball before finishing with his left foot.

Sparta then passed up three chances to build on their lead. Dušan Perniš was forced into a good save to fend away Lafata's effort from distance just before the interval. Three minutes into the second half Pavel Kadeřábek failed to hit the target, despite finding himself in space, and Krejčí's 69th minute cross found Lafata inside the area, but the marksman nodded over.

Sparta did not lose their focusm, though, retaining possession and adding to their haul 15 minutes from time. Perniš parried Lafata's deflected header into the path of Nhamoinesu, who finished from close range. Lafata then set the seal on the victory with six minutes remaining after good work by Kadeřábek.