The Czech Republic failed to qualify for the World Cup in Qatar, losing in the semi-finals of the play-offs to Sweden

Inigo Martinez headed a late equaliser as Spain snatched a Nations League draw against the Czech Republic in Prague.

The Athletic Bilbao defender scored in the final minute of normal time through a header that went in via the crossbar.

Martinez’s goal came after Jan Kuchta’s chip looked to have made it two wins from two for the Czechs in Group A2.

The Czechs had led after four minutes through Jakub Pesek’s finish, but were pegged back by a first international goal from Barcelona’s Gavi.

It was a disappointing end result for the home side, who looked to have done enough to earn a first ever victory over Spain.

Kuchta’s second goal in as many Nations League games after his effort in Thursday’s 2-1 win over Switzerland was the pick of the bunch – a superbly taken lob over Unai Simon after he had been put through on goal.

The result means they end Sunday on four points from the first two games of their maiden top-tier Nations League campaign, the same as Portugal, who top Group A2 thanks to their 4-0 win over the Swiss.

The top two sides face each other next, with Portugal the hosts on Thursday. Spain host Switzerland on the same evening.

Sunday’s result was also disappointing for Luis Enrique’s side, who came into this Nations League off the back of four straight wins following their loss to France in last year’s final.

They could have come away from Sunday’s game with more, though, with their chances including substitute Marco Asensio striking the base of the post with an angled drive in the second-half.

The Real Madrid forward is one of a number of players looking to make an impression and force his way into the side by the World Cup in Qatar – a tournament the Czechs will be absent from.


Czech Rep

Formation 3-4-3

  • 1Vaclík
  • 2Zima
  • 4Brabec
  • 13Mateju
  • 5CoufalBooked at 90mins
  • 22Soucek
  • 15Sadílek
  • 18ZelenySubstituted forJanktoat 24′minutesSubstituted forHavelat 45′minutes
  • 19LingrSubstituted forCernyat 59′minutes
  • 10KuchtaSubstituted forJureckaat 78′minutes
  • 8PesekSubstituted forHlozekat 59′minutes


  • 3Jemelka
  • 6Kudela
  • 7Kalvach
  • 9Hlozek
  • 11Jurecka
  • 12Havel
  • 14Jankto
  • 16Stanek
  • 17Cerny
  • 20Vlkanova
  • 21Král
  • 23Mandous


Formation 4-3-3

  • 23Simón
  • 20Carvajal
  • 14García
  • 3Martínez
  • 17Alonso
  • 9Páez
  • 16RodriBooked at 58minsSubstituted forBusquetsat 61′minutes
  • 8KokeSubstituted forLlorenteat 72′minutes
  • 22SarabiaSubstituted forTorresat 45′minutes
  • 12de TomásSubstituted forMorataat 61′minutes
  • 21OlmoSubstituted forAsensioat 61′minutes


  • 1Sánchez
  • 2Azpilicueta
  • 4Torres
  • 5Busquets
  • 6Llorente
  • 7Morata
  • 10Asensio
  • 11Torres
  • 13Raya
  • 15Llorente
  • 18Alba
  • 19Soler

François Letexier

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