Schick in sight of Baroš record

Author : esmeraldacalhounnew
Publish Date : 2021-07-02 14:00:42
Schick in sight of Baroš record

Schick in sight of Baroš record
Thursday 1 July 2021 by Ondřej Zlámal

Denmark stand between not only the Czech Republic and the last four but also Patrik Schick's chances of being tournament top scorer.

Patrik Schick scored his fourth goal of the finals in the Czech Republic's 2-0 victory against the Netherlands
Patrik Schick scored his fourth goal of the finals in the Czech Republic's 2-0 victory against the Netherlands
Getty Images
Patrik Schick has played down his chances of emulating Milan Baroš by winning the EURO Golden Boot, but that will not stop the comparisons between the Czech Republic striker and the talisman of his country's 2004 campaign.

"It is not a big topic for me – the main thing is the team's success," said Schick when asked about being one goal shy of Cristiano Ronaldo in the UEFA EURO 2020 top scorers race. "My aim is not to win the Golden Boot but to help my team get as far as possible. I am not that interested in how many goals I will have scored by the end."

See all of Schick's goals at the finals
The 25-year-old Bayer Leverkusen forward has claimed four crucial goals in as many games going into Saturday's Baku quarter-final against Denmark – and with Ronaldo's Portugal eliminated, he is the player most likely to catch or eclipse the Juventus star. Schick has already equalled Vladimír Šmicer's overall EURO tally of four and needs just one to sit alongside Baroš – the Czechs' all-time leading marksman at EURO finals after his Golden Boot-winning five strikes in 2004.

Tomáš Galásek, Czech Republic assistant coach, played with Baroš in 2004 and compared the pair for "'Bari' [Baroš] played off the main striker so I would liken Patrik more to Jan Koller, but they are different players," said the 69-cap former international. "Baroš played around Koller, who set up some goals for him. Patrik is creating them on his own and has a strong left foot."

Vladimír Coufal also found the comparison difficult. "That is a hard question," said the Czechs' West Ham full-back. "Patrik is a more technical player. He prepares more in his approach to finishing, though Milan Baroš was an excellent player too – he won the Champions League. But we all want him to win the Golden Boot. If he wants to become a top player he must score one more goal. And if we don't concede, then we are in the semis. That would be great!"

Czech Republic team-mates quiz
Coufal provided an excellent assist for Schick's first goal, a fine header against Scotland in the Group D opener. "I spotted Schick in position and knew, as soon as I got the ball and crossed, that he would beat the two defenders," he said. "It was not served on a plate. It was hard but he did brilliantly to get there.

"He is a smart player. He always finds space, goes past players and manages to get into space in time and either uses his head or volleys – he does it so well. I just need to look in his direction and when I see him, I get him the ball."

Though different types of attackers, Schick and Baroš share one trait – a hunger for goals. "I did not hesitate to take the penalty – I could sniff a goal," said Schick of his penalty against Croatia on Matchday 2, when he had to change his blood-stained shirt before being allowed to convert the spot kick. "Schick is very confident and he scores goals, so there was no reason to talk him out of it," added Coufal. "He took it and scored, so everything was fine. It didn't matter if his nose was bleeding or not!"

Watch Baroš' double against Denmark in 2004
Fellow forward Michael Krmenčík confirms the dressing-room view of Schick, who has also played for Sampdoria, Roma and Leipzig (on loan) . "He's the kind of person for whom team success is more important than goals. If he scores but we lose, he's disappointed. He's a team player just like everybody else," said Krmenčík, who predicts the former Sparta trainee and Bohemians loanee will finish as tournament top scorer.

When the Czechs beat Denmark 3-0 in their 2004 quarter-final en route to a losing semi-final appearance, Baroš bagged two marvellous goals; the Danes will note there is another in-form striker trying to produce a painful déjà vu moment.

Current Denmark defender Mathias Jørgensen told that match remains a sorry memory: "I think of EURO 2004 when I had a really bad experience watching the match in Copenhagen Town Hall Square. We all believed we would easily get past them [Czech Republic], but it turned into an awful and, I remember, rainy day in Copenhagen."

If Schick can replicate Baroš's heroics against the Danes this weekend, he will take a large stride towards making history both individually and for his nation.

• This is Belgium's first game at the Football Arena Munich and only their second in the city, following a 0-0 friendly draw against West Germany in September 1982.

• Belgium's record in Germany is W2 D3 L9, their last visit a 3-1 UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying defeat in Düsseldorf in October 2011. Their last victory in the country was a 2-1 UEFA European Championship qualifying success against East Germany in Leipzig in March 1983.

EURO facts: Italy

2019 highlights: Belgium 1-3 Italy
• This is Italy's tenth EURO final tournament and their seventh in a row since sitting out the 1992 edition in Sweden. Only twice have they failed to advance through the group stage, in 1996 and 2004; they were quarter-finalists at UEFA EURO 2016.

• Italy triumphed on home soil at the 1968 UEFA European Championship and have been runners-up twice since – in 2000 and 2012.

• This time round, Roberto Mancini's side won all ten of their qualifiers to finish first in Group J, swelling the number of countries to have reached the finals with a perfect record to eight.

• A 3-0 win away to Bosnia and Herzegovina in their penultimate qualifier was Italy's tenth successive win in all internationals, the first time in their history they had achieved that feat.

• The Azzurri made it 11 straight victories with a 9-1 home win against Armenia in their final qualifying game, the first time they had scored nine goals in a game since August 1948. Seven different players were on the scoresheet, a new national record.

• Having never scored three goals in a EURO finals game before this tournament, Italy managed it in both their first two matches, beating Switzerland and Turkey 3-0 at the Olimpico in Rome, where they secured first place in Group A with a 1-0 defeat of Wales on Matchday 3.

Italy's baby photo challenge
• Italy squeezed past Austria in the last 16 in London, extra-time goals from subsitutes Federico Chiesa (95) and Matteo Pessina (105) taking them into a fourth successive EURO quarter-final.

• That made Italy's record in knockout ties at the EURO final tournament W8 L6.

• That 1972 defeat by Belgium is one of three EURO quarter-final ties Italy have lost, the others both on penalties, against Spain in 2008 and Germany in 2016. They beat Bulgaria in 1968 (2-3 a, 2-0 h), Romania in 2000 (2-0) and England in 2012 (0-0, 4-2 pens), going on to reach the final in all three tournaments.

• This is Italy's second game at the Football Arena Munich, after their 4-1 friendly loss against Germany in March 2016. That was their second match in the city, where they beat Haiti 3-1 at the Olympiastadion in the 1974 FIFA World Cup group stage.

• Italy's overall record in Germany is W16 D9 L7, their last visit that 2016 loss in Munich. They won the 2006 World Cup in Germany, playing two of their games in Hamburg, one in Hannover and two in Kaiserslautern before beating the hosts 2-0 after extra time in the semi-final in Dortmund and then defeating France on penalties at Berlin's Olympiastadion.

• The Azzurri's record at the 2006 World Cup was W5 D2; at the 1974 tournament in West Germany it was W1 D1 L1, Italy opening with that victory against Haiti in Munich  before playing their next two games in Stuttgart. That was also where their 1988 UEFA European Championship campaign ended with a 2-0 semi-final defeat by the Soviet Union; their record at that tournament in West Germany was W2 D1 L1.

Category : sports

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