06/21/2012 01:29 pm ET

Portugal vs. Czech Republic: Euro 2012 Quarterfinals Preview

By Vasil Kotsev,

Paulo Bento's men face a tough challenge in the form of the Narodak, and will rely on the Real Madrid ace to guide them to the final four where Spain or France await.


G. Selassie, Sivok, Kadlec, Limbersky
Hubschman, Plasil
Jiracek, Kolar, Pilar

Rui Patricio
Joao Pereira, Alves, Pepe, Coentrao
Meireles, Veloso, Moutinho
Nani, Postiga, Ronaldo

Michal Bilek's biggest worry ahead of the quarterfinal clash with Portugal is the fitness of star midfielder Tomas Rosicky, who is rated doubtful for the game on Thursday following his Achilles tendon injury sustained in the game against Greece.

Should the Arsenal star fail to recover in time for the clash with Paulo Bento's men, Viktoria Plzen's Daniel Kolar will continue to deputize. Up front, Milan Baros is set to spearhead the Czech Republic attack.

Portugal has a full-strength squad at its disposal for the game against the Narodak. Helder Postiga will be supported up front by Nani and Cristiano Ronaldo, with Raul Meireles, Miguel Veloso and Joao Moutinho forming a triple pivot in midfield.


  • Czech Republic eliminated Portugal at the same stage of the tournament in 1996 after a narrow 1-0 victory.
  • Petr Jiracek's goal after two minutes and 14 seconds against Greece was the joint-third fastest goal in the history of the tournament.
  • Czech Republic qualified from Group A with a negative goal difference. This also happened at Euro 1996, when the Narodak reached the semifinals.
  • Jaroslav Plasil, David Limbersky, Tomas Rosicky, Tomas Pekhart, Petr Jiracek and Daniel Kolar will all incur a suspension should they receive a yellow card.
  • Portugal's victories over Denmark and Netherlands came on the back of four defeats in 2012, in which it scored just one goal.
  • The Seleccao have never failed to advance from the group stage of a European tournament.
  • Cristiano Ronaldo's double against Netherlands took him to 34 goals for Portugal, surpassing Luis Figo's haul for the national team.
  • Helder Postiga, Ronaldo, Fabio Coentrao, Raul Meireles and Joao Pereira will incur a suspension should they receive a booking.

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