You can’t play, you can win

He calmed down, matured and became an infallible executor of key penalties. He grew into a leader on the field and in the booth. Ladislav Krejčí guided Sparta in the “S” derby on its way to the title. And the Water Bearers gloss his summer rise.

He is only twenty-four, but in Sparta he already fulfills the role of the leader of the team, he is practically indispensable in building the atmosphere in the team. And even on the pitch, Ladislav Krejčí is definitely not afraid to take responsibility.

Going for a penalty in the decisive moments of a derby that can practically decide the title is really not an easy task. Krejčí converted it on Saturday, deciding Sparta’s victory over Slavia 3:2 and bringing Letenská closer to the title. And with the fans, he only strengthened his status as an icon of the current team.

The protege of Zbrojovka in Brno appeared in Sparta when he was twenty. “I’ve known Láda practically since I was a child, because we’re the same year. In addition to regular matches with Brno, I started meeting him in the youth categories and in the national team’s cabin. I had the opportunity to follow his progress relatively closely,” recalls former defender Karel Tvaroh.

“Although I perceived his strong points even then, which were always a winning mentality, game intelligence and commitment, I never dreamed that he would develop into a key personality of the entire league so quickly,” adds Tvaroh.

From a wild boar to a star, like Nedvěd once was

In his early days in the league, Krejčí’s excess of effort was sometimes even counterproductive. “He needed to find himself a little, to direct his strength and energy in the right direction. That is, not to the sometimes too sharp interventions that he sometimes gave out. In the match with Pardubice three years ago, he hit an opponent with his elbow and received a lot of criticism at the time. There was a turning point for him, when he began to better understand and control certain things. Pavel Nedvěd went through a similar story years ago at Letná, who received very sharp criticism from coach Dobiaš after a series of expulsions. He took her to heart. And where he worked his way up,” reminds football journalist Luděk Mádl.

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According to him, it is important for Sparta that it found a leader in him. “It was a strong Spartan tradition to have a strong boss on the field. Whether it was Kvasňák, Berger, Chovanec, or Hašek. In a certain period, Sparta significantly lacked someone like that. She tried to move Tomáš Sivok into that role, but he then went abroad, and similar attempts with Lukáš Vácha also only partially worked. On the other hand, Ladislav Krejčí matured into that role quite naturally and fulfills it brilliantly,” says Mádl.

Moderator Jaromír Bosák adds another characteristic: “Krejčí is exactly the type who doesn’t just go to the field to play football.” He always wants to win. And that is perhaps the most important quality for an ambitious team.”

If he avoids further injuries, it will be extremely difficult for Sparta to keep him in the squad for the next seasons. If Krejčí is tempted by a trip abroad in the summer, of course, it cannot be ruled out that he could follow his former defense partner Dávid Hanck to the Netherlands. According to verified information, Feyenoord Rotterdam was already circling around the 24-year-old Sparta forward in the fall.

Saturday’s derby between Sparta and Slavia was analyzed in great detail by Nosiči vody. Who outsmarted whom in the tactical duel between coaches Brian Priske and Jindřich Trpišovský? In the end, did luck play a bigger role, or a more elaborate plan? And did the derby decide the title?

Even referee Dalibor Černý, who with his colleagues officiated the third spring derby in a row, did not avoid evaluation. What did he do wrong, what does he deserve praise for and what does the fact that the most important matches are repeatedly taken care of by the same man prove?

From Řezniček to Messi

The podcasters also discussed the struggle for survival in the Fortuna league, which was extremely rich in events. Jakub Řezníček was caught twice by Florin Nita from the penalty kick, making a significant contribution to Pardubice’s rescue. Should Řezníček have kicked both penalties? What is the Brno problem? And was Zlín coach Pavel Vrba justified in complaining after the match in Teplice?

In the foreign block, the Bearers discussed the backstage of Feyenoord Rotterdam’s championship success in the Dutch league, of course they couldn’t miss Barcelona’s title, and they also thought about where Xavi’s team could move the eventual return of Lionel Messi.

Listen to the entire fresh episode of The Water Bearers in the player at the beginning.

Water carriers

Football Podcast News List. The trio of Jaromír Bosák, Luděk Mádl and Karel Tvaroh every week about Czech and world football. Stories, affairs, important characters on the field and behind the scenes.

Have a suggestion to improve the podcast? Or do you want to praise us? Write to [email protected].

#play #win
2023-05-16 10:00:00

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