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Page last updated at 13:59 GMT, Wednesday, 8 April 2009 14:59 UK

Czechs in turmoil as coach sacked

Petr Rada
Petr Rada took over as coach in 2008

The Czech Republic national side is in turmoil after coach Petr Rada was sacked and captain Tomas Ujfalusi quit.

Six players have also been banned, with West Ham's Radoslav Kovac and Reading's Marek Matejovsky among them.

A string of bad results prompted Rada's sacking, while a breach of discipline after last week's defeat by Slovakia led to the player bans.

The Czechs trail leaders Northern Ireland by five points in World Cup qualifying Group Three.

They lost 2-1 at home to neighbours Slovakia on 1 April after being held to a 0-0 draw in Slovenia on 28 March, seriously denting their chances of reaching the 2010 World Cup finals in South Africa.

606: DEBATE

The Czech Republic have eight points from six matches, with a game in hand on leaders Northern Ireland.

Former Liverpool striker Milan Baros, Martin Fenin, Vaclav Sverkos and Ujfalusi were the other four players banned indefinitely, with captain Ujfalusi immediately announcing his retirement from international football.

The six players were criticised for visiting a restaurant following the defeat.

Another key Czech defender, Marek Jankulovski of AC Milan, said he is also considering retiring.

Rada last year replaced Karel Brueckner, who led them to the Euro 2004 semi-finals.

The Czechs next play in Slovakia on 5 September.



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see also
N Ireland 0-0 Czech Republic
10 Sep 08 |  Internationals
Czech Kovac joins Hammers on loan
30 Jan 09 |  West Ham
Reading to sign Czech midfielder
07 Jan 08 |  Reading


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