Saturday, December 6, 2014

Czechoslovakia Greatest All-time team

This blogger Artur Yanturin of Russia copied many of my blog teams.  This blog was one of them.  It was my Russia All-Time Team here.  His team was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.   His Spartak Moscow All-Time team entry of  was published in October 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2017.  His entry of the Dutch-German rivalry between Real Madrid and Barcelona was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.  He also copied many many of my blog entries.

His Facebook and Instagram

Czechoslovakia 1976 European Champion
Austria-Hungary World Cup 1954

Czechoslovakia had a long successful football history even through it was often overshadowed by its neighbours, namely the Austria's Wunderteam of the 1930's, Hungary's Might Magyars of the 1950's and Germany of the entire post-World War period.  They never had a super team that poets, musicians, etc would write about, but their record in big tournaments are impressive.  Czechoslovakia reached the World Cup Final twice, losing to Italy in 1938 and to Brazil 1962.  In the European Championship, they won it in 1976, earning a third place in 1960 and 1980.  As the Czech Republic, they were runner-up in 1996 and third in 2004.  

Their best teams were probably the World Cup team in 1962 and the European Champion in 1976.   Josef Masopust won the 1962 Ballon d'Or after the WC in Chile.  In 1976, Antonin Panenk's penalty during the European Championship Final is remembered as one of the best ever. It inspired many penalty-takers in the future generation.

After the breakup of Czechoslovakia, the Czech Republic inherited their record.  In 1996, they made a Cinderella run at the European Championship.  They beat Italy, Portugal and France before losing to Germany with a Golden Goal in the Final.  Although they went out in the first round at Euro 2000, they were remembered for their epic battles with France and Holland.  In 2004, they reached the semifinal after beating Germany, Holland and Denmark.  

As for Slovakia, they qualified for the WC 2010.  They beat Italy 3-2 on the last match of Group Stage and advanced to the Round of 16 before losing to Holland 2-1.

This is my all-time team for Czechoslovakia. If there were an All-Time World Cup, this would be the 23 players I would bring to the tournament.  All players must be active players before the breakup of Czechoslovakia in the 1990's.
World Cup 1962

GK: Frantisek Planicka 
Frantisek Planicka was considered one of the greatest keepers of his generation.  He was known for his sportsmanship. He went to play in two World Cup Finals in 1934 and 1938, where he finished second in 1934.  He was voted as the best goalkeeper for the 1938 World Cup Finals. He was their captain. He played all his career for Slavia Prague, during which time the club won the Czech league eight times and the Mitropa Cup once.

Frantisek Planicka 
Ivo Viktor placed third in the 1976 Ballon d'Or, and was a five-time winner of the Czechoslovak Footballer of the Year award, and a two-time winner of the European Goalkeeper of the Year award.  He was the hero of European Championship in 1976, where Czechoslovakia beat West Germany in the Final. He played for Czechoslovakia for 63 times between 1966 and 1977. The majority of his senior club career was with Dukla Prague.

Schrojf was a participant at the three consecutive World Cups Finals (1954 , 1958 and1962 FIFA World Cup, where Czechoslovakia surprised the world and went through to the final, losing to champions Brazil.   He was voted the best goalkeeper of that World Cup Finals. He had 39 caps between 1953 and 1962.  On club level, Schrojf played mostly for Slovan Bratislava.  He stint lasted from 1955 to 1965.  

Karol Dobias was capped 67 times for Czechoslovakia, scored 6 goals. He was a participant at the 1970 FIFA World Cup. and a member of Czechoslovak winning team at 1976 European Football Championship. In the 1976 final game Dobiaš scored a goal that gave Czechoslovakia a 2-0 lead against West Germany.  In 1970 and 1971, he was named Czechoslovak Footballer of the Year.

RB/CB: Jaroslav Burgr 
Jaroslav Burgr was a participant in two World Cup Finals, in 1934 and 1938. He played 57 matches for the national team between 1929 and 1938, while captaining the national team on several occasions.  He also played for Bohemia under the German occupation. He played domestic club football mostly for AC Sparta Prague, where he collected 7 league titles. He played for SK Most.

Miroslav Kadlec played for Czechoslovakia and later the Czech Republic; for both he played a total of 64 matches and scored two goals. He took part in the 1990 FIFA World Cup. Six years later, he led the Czech national football team on its way to finish second at the 1996 UEFA European Football Championship. During his career, Kadlec played for four Czech clubs, and also had an eight-year stint with Bundesliga's 1. FC Kaiserslautern, where he was crowned league champion in 1991 and 1998.
Miroslav Kadlec
As a player, Chovanec spent almost his whole career at Sparta Prague.  He first played for them for a season, and then, he joined RH Cheb. Between 1981 and 1988, he again played for Sparta Prague.  In 1988, he moved to the Netherlands to play briefly for PSV Eindhoven, but he moved back to Sparta in 1991. His last stint lasted until 1995. He played 52 times for Czechoslovakia and was a participant in the 1990 FIFA World Cup.

CB: Anton Ondrus 
Anton Ondrus played 58 matches for Czechoslovakia and scored 9 goals. As the captain, he led the national team in the 1976 UEFA European Championship, winning against West Germany in the Final.  He played for Slovan Bratislava from 1970 to 1980, and he served as the captain.  In the West, he played for Club Brugge K.V. in Belgium, CS Thonon-les-Bains in France and FC Biel-Bienne in Switzerland. 

CB: Jan Popluhar 
Jan Popluhar  was one of the greatest defenders from the Warsaw Pact countries. He was best remembered for taking Czechoslovakia to the Final of the World Cup in 1962.  He earned 62 caps.  He played 15 seasons for ŠK Slovan Bratislava. In 1968, he moved to French league side Olympique Lyonnais. Two seasons there were enough, but subsequently he spent five years with Austrian amateur club SK Slovan Vienna as player/coach.

Jan Popluhar
LB: Ladislav Novak 
Ladislav Novak was born in 1931.  Between 1952 and 1966, he played 75 matches for Czechoslovakia, 71 of them as its team captain.  He was one of the best fullback form his country. He went to three World Cup Finals: 1954, 1958 and 1962, where Czechoslovakia finished second in 1962.  In his country, Novák played mainly for Dukla Prague and won 8 championship titles with them. 

Koloman Gögh began playing football in KolárovoAfter military service, Gögh resumed his football career at Slovan Bratislava. He played for Czechoslovakia national football team between 1974 and 1980 when they won the 1976 European Football Championship. ; in that period he played in 55 matches and scored one goal. Gögh was a participant in the 1980 UEFA European Championship.

Karel Pešek played as midfielder for Sparta Prague and the Czechoslovak football national team. He played from 1913 to 1933 (interrupted only by military service during World War I), scoring 149 goals in his club career. He was voted by IFFHS as the 81st greatest European footballer of the 20th century, and the third greatest Czechoslovakian player of the 20th century. He was a participant in the 1920 and 1924 Olympic Games. At the 1920 Olympic Games he also participated in ice hockey, winning the bronze medal with the Czechoslovak team.

Josef Masopust is regarded as the greatest player coming from Czechoslovakia. He led the Czechoslovakia team that reached the 1962 FIFA World Cup final, losing to Brazil.   In Europe, he took Czechoslovakia to third place at the 1960 UEFA European Football Championship.  He was capped 63 times. He was named European Footballer of the Year in 1962.  For domestic football, Masopust won eight league championships and three national cups with Dukla.
Josef Masopust 

DM/CM: Svatopluk Pluskal 
Svatopluk Pluskal was capped 58 times from 1952 and 1965.  He played in three World Cup Finals from 1954, 1958 and 1962.  In 1962, he formed a partnership in the midfield with Josef Masopust and led his country to second place. The best years of his club career were spent at Dukla Prague, the army club, where he played for almost 16 years.

 CM/AM: Andrej Kvašňák  
Andrej Kvašňák was capped 47 times for the national team between 1960 and 1970.  He was a participant in the 1962 World Cup Finals, forging a partnership in the centre of the park with Josef Masopust at international level and Czechoslovakia finished second. He also went to the 1970 FIFA World Cup. In club football, he played mostly for Sparta Prague, where he was voted as their Player of the Century. He also played a few seasons for Racing Mechelen in Belgium. team.

Antonin Panenka played most of his career for Bohemians Prague. He later played for Rapid Wien between 1981 and 1985. Panenka won the 1976 European Championship with Czechoslovakia. In the final against West Germany he scored the winning penalty in the shootout with a softly chipped ball up the middle as the goalie dived away; this style of penalty is now called the "Panenka penalty".  He played 59 times for the national team between 1973 and 1982.  He went to the Euro 1980 and the 1982 World Cup Finals.
Antonin Panenka 
RW: Zdenek Nehoda 
Zdenek Nehoda played 91 times for Czechoslovakia between 1971 and 1987.  He was the most capped player for the national team. He was the Golden Generation that won the European Championship in 1976 as well as a third place four years later in Italy.  He also went to the World Cup in 1982. He was named the Footballer of the Year in 1978 and 1979.  For domestic football, he played for Dukla Prague between 1971 and 1983.  After 1983, he played in the West with stints in Germany and Belgium. 

Marian Masny played 75 times for the nation team, in which he was the team that won  the 1976 UEFA European Championship. He also played at the 1980 UEFA European Championship where they came third and at the 1982 FIFA World Cup Finals.  He played most of his career for Slovan Bratislava from 1968 to 1989. His brother Vojtech was also capped by Czechoslovakia.

AM/SS/FW: Vaclav Pilat 
Vaclav Pilat played four games for the Czechoslovakia between 1920 and 1922 , but it was is only due to the fact that the national team did not start until 1920.  He played in the historic first official national team match -at the Olympic Games in Antwerp.  He was a member of the so-called "Iron Sparta",  he famous Sparta team from the first half of the 20s of the 20th century . He played 443 matches for Sparta and scored 323 goals in them.  He seriously wounded in the First World War. He still managed to return to football. 

FW: Laszlo Kubala 
Laszlo Kubala was born in Hungary of a multi-cultural background.  He was known as one of the greatest Barcelona players ever.  He still managed to win 4 Li Liga titles in the 1950's in an era dominated by Real Madrid.  In 1961, Barcelona eliminated Real Madrid from the European Cup, the first ever loss by Real Madrid at the tournament. He was capped by Hungry, Spain and Czechoslovakia, but never had a long international due being an exile living in the West.

Laszlo Kubala

LW/FW: Antonin Puc (Czech Republic)
Antonin Puc played 61 matches for Czechoslovakia, scoring 35 goals. He played for Czechoslovakia in the 1934 FIFA World Cup scoring two goals, including one in the final, a 2-1 loss against Italy, and also played in the 1938 edition. He spent most of his club career with Slavia Prague. He is the all-time leading scorer for the Czechoslovak national team.

Oldrich Nejedly spent his entire career at Sparta Prague as an inside-forward. He scored 162 league goals in 187 games, winning four Czechoslovak First League championships in 1932, 1936, 1938 and 1939, adding a Mitropa Cup in 1935. He is considered one of Czechoslovakia's greatest players. He was top goalscorer of the 1934 World Cup after his 5th goal was recognised in 2006. He was awarded the Bronze Ball in the 1934 World Cup. as the third most outstanding player of the tournament. 

Josef Bican was a member of the Austrian Wunderteam of the 1930s. He went to the World Cup Finals in 1934.  He is one of the most prolific scorers in history. He scored around 950 goals. He was, in the leagues that he played, the top-scorer 12 times during his 27 years career and Europe's top scorer in five consecutive season.  He played for Rapid Wien before moving to play in Czechoslovakia.  He was also played for Czechoslovakia, but missed out on the World Cup Finals in 1938.
Josef Bican

Honorable Mention
Alexander Vencel, Luděk Mikloško, Petr Kouba, Theodor Reimann, Imrich Stacho, Koloman Gögh, Tomáš Pospíchal, Ján Kocian, Antonín Hojer, Jan Fiala, Alexander Horváth, Jaroslav Burgr, Ladislav Ženíšek, Jozef Barmoš, Jan Lála,Vladimír Šmicer, Radoslav Látal, Jan BergerPatrik Berger, Ladislav Jurkemik, Ladislav Kuna, Jan Vanik, Antonín Perner, Ľubomír Moravčík, Josef Kostalek, Jozef Adamec, Jozef Ludl, Ladislav Vízek, Jan Košek, Adolf Scherer, Tomas Skuhravy, Ladislav Petráš,  Jiří Němec, Jan Říha, Josef Silný, František Svoboda.

Squad Explanation
-- The original team was created in 2014 with players from before and after the breakup of Czechoslovakia.  In July, 2022, I did a review of this team.  Then, I decided to exclude players from after the breakup of Czechoslovakia. This team should be just about Czechoslovakia.  For the former Yugoslavia, I also separated them into two All-Time teams Yugoslavia and Yugoslavia after the breakup during my review of that team in 2022 while individual republics included players from the era under Yugoslavia.  My Soviet Union All-Time team only included players who played for the USSR.  There were no reason to combine them for Czechoslovakia.
-- All players who were capped by Czechoslovakia at the senior level were eligible, but I would only select players who spent a part of their prime playing for Czechoslovakia.
-- The post-Czechoslovakia generation has more exposure outside the Warsaw Pact due to playing in the bigger European leagues. Pavel Nedved, Petr Cech, Tomas Ujfalus, Marek Jankulovski, Jan Koller, Karel Poborský, Tomas Rosicky and Marek Hamšík were on the original team in 2014.  In 2022, I was studying to see if Martin Škrtel and Zdeněk Grygera should be added to the team when I decided to drop all players from the post-Czechoslovakia period.  Miroslav Kadlec remained on the team because parts of his prime were played under Czechoslovakia.  
-- The majority of the Czech Republic team that finished second in the Euro 1996 was capped by Czechoslovakia.  Václav Němeček was their captain while Pavel Kuka and Radoslav Látal made the Team of the tournament. Vladimír Šmicer had a single cap while Patrik Berger had two.  So I did not consider them. Pavel Nedvěd only played at the youth level, which made him ineligible.  Miroslav Kadlec, however, already started for Czechoslovakia at the 1990 World Cup Finals.  He was the only player considered for this team.
-- Josef Masopust, Frantisek Planicka, Josef Bican, Jan Popluhar and Laszlo Kubala were automatic selections.  No explanation was needed.
-- Czechoslovakia had many Golden teams.  They won the European Championship in 1976.  They also finished second in the 1934 and 1962 World Cup Finals, and third at Euro 1960 and 1980. They had a record that was much better than most countries in the world.  My squad was a mixture of all of those great teams. 
Euro 1976
-- Oldřich Nejedlý, Jaroslav Burgr, Frantisek Planicka and Antonin Puc also played in the 1934 World Cup Finals, where Czechoslovakia placed second.  Josef Bican also went to the Finals, but he played with Austria's Wunderteam.
-- Czechoslovakia finished second at the 1962 World Cup Finals in Chile.  They lost to a Brazilian team, inspired by Garrincha.  They also came third at the Euro 1960. From that team, I selected  Svatopluk Pluskal, Jan Popluhar, Joesf Masopust, Andrej Kvašňák and Ladislav Novak into this all-time team.
-- Czechoslovakia beat West Germany in the Final of the European Championship in 1976.  It stopped the Germans from getting a triple crown(they already won Euro 1972 and World Cup Finals 1974). Ivo Viktor, Zdeněk Nehoda, Marián Masný, Antonin Panenka, Anton Ondrus and Karol Dobias were selected for my all-time team.  The core of the team finished third at Euro 1980.
-- Ivo Viktor was placed third in the 1976 Ballon d'Or after Czechoslovakia's victory in Euro 1976.  However, Vitor made a mistake in the final match that helped the Germans to equalize and sent the game to overtime.  He often joked that his error gave the chance for Antonín Panenka to score his famous penalty in the shootout.
Ivo Viktor 
-- The IFFHS elected František Plánička the best Czech goalkeeper – as well as the sixth best in Europe and the ninth best overall – of the twentieth century. Both he and Viktor were undisputed selections.
-- The place for third choice keeper belonged to Viliam Schrojf.  He was voted the best goalkeeper at the 1962 World Cup Finals.  However, before I selected him, I looked at several goalkeepers.
-- Alexander Vencel was considered as one of Czechoslovakia's greatest goalkeepers.  He helped Slovan Bratislava to win the 1969 Cup Winners' Cup. He only had 25 caps, largely because of playing in the same era as Ivo Viktor.  Luděk Mikloško had a long career with West Ham United, but the prime of career in England was after the breakup.  Nevertheless, he had over 40 caps for Czechoslovakia.  I did not really consider Petr Kouba who had a few cap before the breakup, but I put him on Honorable Mention.  In the early 1950s, Theodor Reimann set a record of not conceding a goal in the Czechoslovak First League for 769 minutes, a record that he held until Sparta Prague goalkeeper Petr Čech surpassed this mark in November 2001.  I also put Imrich Stacho on Honorable Mention.
-- Jan Popluhar was one of the greatest defenders from the Warsaw Pact countries. In 1967, he received a special World Fair Play Award, for which he was nominated by Pelé.  He earned it for his gentlemanly approach to the injured Pelé in the World Cup match in Chile in an era when substitutions were not allowed in football. "Popluhár approached me very sensitively. It's like we agreed with our eyes, he won't touch me, I'll pass the ball, I won't dig through him," said Pele about his encounter with Popluhar. He was also selected by Slovakia as their Player of the Century. As the captain, Anton Ondrus led the national team in the 1976 UEFA European Championship. In 2014, I then selected Miroslav Kadlec.  He played in the 1990 World Cup.  I kept all three of them during the 2022 review of the team.
-- For the fourth central defender, I made a shortlist of Jozef Chovanec, Ján Kocian, Antonín Hojer, Jan Fiala, Alexander Horváth and Jaroslav Burgr.  Svatopluk Pluskal and Ladislav Jurkemik could also operate as a central defender, but I labelled them as a midfielders.  
Jozef Chovanec
-- Jozef Chovanec was a midfielder and sweeper.  In 1988, he joined PSV Eindhoven as a replacement for Ronald Koeman, but he did not play much there.  Nevertheless, he was rated highly by many websites around the world.  Ján Kocian was Czechoslovak Footballer of the Year in 1990 and Jan Fiala won the award in 1982.  Fiala was on the second Best XI of IFFHS team for the Czech Republic.  But overall, it seemed that they were not mentioned much. Antonín Hojer was the best-scoring defender in the history of Sparta Prague. Sparta Prague credited him for inventing the "Panenko" penalty.  In 1930, he scored a similar penalty kick in a match between Czechoslovakia and Spain. The Spanish goalkeeper that day was Ricardo Zamora. Czechoslovakia won 2-1.  Jaroslav Burgr was his teammate in Sparta Prague, and seemed to be his understudy.  He was a big name defender, and I put him as one of my rightbacks.   Alexander Horváth was the captain of Slovan Bratislava when they defeated FC Barcelona in the 1969 European Cup Winners' Cup Final.   In the end, I narrowed it down to Jozef Chovanec, Antonín Hojer and Alexander Horváth. 
-- Then, I took Chovanec because he was supported by more accurate information.  He was ranked highly by a friend of mine who was an expert in the field.  He was also named on the Czech Republic Best XI by IFFHS.  Hojer went too far back and I only could find the story of his invention of "Panenko" on a single source. It was not verified.
-- Karol Dobiaš was Czechoslovakia's greatest rightback. I had several candidates for the backup. Radoslav Látal played as a right-side midfielder in a 3-5-2, but he was a star at the Euro 1996, a tournament after the breakup.  I also came across Ladislav Ženíšek and Jozef Barmoš.  I was very serious about two big tournament heros Jan Lála and Jan Pivarnik. Lála successfully helped Czechoslovakia to reach the 1962 World Cup Final, but he missed the final match against Brazil due to an injury.  Jan Pivarnik was selected to the Team of Tournament in the Euro 1976 Finals.  He was considered one of the best in the Europe at the time.  In the end, I took Jaroslav Burgr.  He was a right side central defender in a 2-3-5 formation.   He was one of the most famous players ever from Sparta. I seriously considered him for a central defensive position, but in the end, I took him as my rightback. 
Karol Dobias 
-- Ladislav Novak would be the starting leftback.  He was probably the best fullback ever from this country.  Frantisek Kolenaty, Josef Čtyřoký and Koloman Gögh fought for the second spot.  Josef Čtyřoký formed a great defensive unit with František Plánička and Jaroslav  Burgr in the 1930's, in which Czechoslovakia reached the Final of the 1934 World Cup Finals.  Koloman Gögh earned 55 international starts and holds a record streak of 48 consecutive games in which he was in the starting lineup. He achieved his greatest international success at the European Championship 1976.  He seemed to be the right candidate over the other two.
-- The top midfielders from Czechoslovakia were Karel Pešek, Josef Masopust, Svatopluk Pluskal and Antonin Panenka. They were the easier decision.  I later added Andrej Kvašňák to the team.   
 -- Antonin Panenka had a type of penalty named after him after he scored one of the greatest penalty in the Final of Euro 1976.  However, I mentioned above that the "Panenka" was invented by Antonín Hojer. It was not verified. 
-- In 1962,  Svatopluk Pluskal and Josef Masopust formed a midfield that led his country to second place in the World Cup Finals.  They also finished third at Euro 1960. Pluskal was credited as the first player to use the slide tackle.  Massopust won the Ballon D'or that year. 
-- Andrej Kvašňák was a part of that 1962 midfield.  He also helped the national team to qualify for the 1970 World Cup Finals.  However, his selection was inconclusive.  I nearly took forward František Svoboda over him because his position covered by Antonin Panenka.  In the end, the team might need a backup playmaker.  The fans of his club Sparta Prague also voted him as their Player of the Century.  He might be more important than Svoboda in the history of football in Czechoslovakia.
-- Karel Pešek was voted by IFFHS as the 81st greatest European footballer of the 20th century, and the third greatest Czechoslovakian player of the 20th century behind Josef Bican and Josef Masopust. He was a center-half.  He was also listed as a defensive midfielder.  "In my life, I have only seen three really great footballers. One was Di Stéfano. Second, Pele. And the third Káďa (Pešek)," Santiago Bernabeu said about him.
-- Josef Kostalek and Ladislav Jurkemik only made honorable mention.  I almost took Jurkemik as one of my central defenders.  He was one of the last players dropped.
-- Matthias Sindelar was of Czech descent. He was born in Vysočina Region, which is now Czech Republic.  His birth name was Matěj Šindelář, but his parents Germanized his first name to Matthias after his family moved to Vienna.  He grew up in the same streets in Vienna as Josef Bucan, who was also an Austrian with Czech descent. Both Josef Bucan and Laszlo Kubala are on this team, but their status were different from Sindelar.  They were capped by Czechoslovakia.   No one knew knew how Sindelar felt about his Czech roots.  I considered the fact that he refused to play for Germany after Austria was annexed by Nazi Germany in 1938.  His loyalty to Austria was never in question, and to avoid any controversy,  I left him off the team.
-- The right wing position was very strong.  Zdenek Nehoda is Czechoslovakia 's most capped player.  Kevin Keegan considered Marian Masny to be one of the best wingers in the world.  On the left, I did not have a natural winger.   Antonin Puc was a left wing forward.  He remains the all-time leading scorer for Czechoslovakia. It took 67 years for Jan Koller to break his 31 international goal tally (if his record carried over to the Czech Republic).  I would have taken Patrik Berger, but his prime came after the breakup of Czechoslovakia.  His uncle Jan Berger a midfielder also made Honorable Mention.
Marian Masny
-- Josef Bican also played for Czechoslovakia, but he is normally better known for his role with Austria's Wunderteam.  He was due to represent Czechoslovakia at the 1938 World Cup Finals, but because of a clerical error, he missed it. I put him on both this team and my Austria All-Time team.  He is one of the highest goal scorer in the history of the game.  When Cristano Ronaldo broke Bican's all-time goal scoring record, the Czech FA came out and defended his record.  That suggested that the Czech Republic claimed him as one of his own.
-- Vaclav Pilat played for Sparta Prague roughy 20 years before Josef Bican.  And in Bican's prime, the fans of the club considered him a better player than Bican.  That said a lot about him.
-- Laszlo Kubala had played for three different national teams, but his first ever cap was from Czechoslovakia.  So he belonged to this all-time team.  He was one of the greatest footballer who played for Barcelona FC.  In 1947, he married Anna Viola Daučíkova, the sister of the Czechoslovakian national coach, Ferdinand Daučík.
-- Oldřich Nejedlý was the top goalscorer of the 1934 World Cup, where Czechoslovakia finished second behind Italy. He won the bronze ball as the third best player of the Finals, but he is largely forgotten outside of Czechoslovakia.  
Oldrich Nejedly
-- Tomáš Skuhravý might have scored plenty of goals at the 1990 World Cup Finals, but his career outside the tournament was limited.  He only received honourable mention. 
-- I nearly took František Svoboda.  Instead, I took midfielder Andrej Kvašňák.  The forward already included Oldřich Nejedlý, Josef Bican, Antonin Puc and Laszlo Kubala.  

Starting lineup


  1. Karel Pesek is considered one of the most iconic Czech players of all time. He was the leader of the first great generation of Czechoslovakia and came close to winning the first great tournament for his country at the Olympics in Antwerp, where they were unfairly disqualified.

  2. Planicka
    Dobias Ondrus Popluhar Novak
    Pesek Ladislav-Kuna Masopust
    Nejedly Bican Puc

    Kuna could have been immortalized had Spartak Trnava's goal against Ajax not been disallowed and were the team to win the 1969 European Cup. Nevertheless, his 1969 performance beats Panenka's 1980.