With a blood-smeared nose, Bundesliga striker Patrik Schick Czech Republic shot towards the round of 16 at the European Football Championship and put Croatia in second place in the World Cup even more in trouble.
The Bayer Leverkusen attacker scored 1: 1 (1: 0) this Friday in Glasgow with his third tournament goal with a penalty kick (37th minute) to take the lead, which the former Bundesliga professional Ivan Perisic (47th) equalized.
The draw helps the Czech Republic (4 points) significantly more than the generally honest Croatians, who only have one point on their account and must absolutely win the final group game against Scotland.
Inspired by the 2-0 opening win against the Scots, the Czechs did not holed up on the defensive, but played courageously forward from the start.
The favored Croatians seemed surprised by the offensive direction of the opponent and found it extremely difficult to stage creative attacks.
The former Frankfurt Ante Rebic, who acted as a striker, was largely in the air.
Andrej Kramaric from the Bundesliga club TSG 1899 Hoffenheim was not a factor at all and was replaced in the second half.
Unlike the European champions from 1976, who played a lot on the wings and caused difficulties for the Croatian defense at one point or another.
The best chance in the early stages was Schick (18th), who scored in the Scotland game from over 50 meters.
The Bayer Leverkusen attacker didn't hit the ball fully, so Croatia's goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic had no trouble.
Perisic's first shot on goal of the 2018 World Cup runners-up came after 23 minutes from a corner.
The harmless attempt of the midfielder, who previously played for Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and VfL Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga, did not pose any problems for Tomas Vaclik in the Czech goal.
After a few minutes of idling, the Croatians caused the next upset - albeit involuntarily.
After a corner kick, defender Dejan Lovren met Czech striker Schick with his elbow in the face in a dogfight.
According to the video images, referee Carlos Del Cerro Grande from Spain decided on a penalty, which Schick safely converted after a short treatment with a bleeding nose.
According to the regulations, the 25-year-old was allowed to stay on the field despite the wound to take the penalty kick because he suffered it as a result of a physical offense for which the opponent was cautioned and he was also intended to be the penalty kick.
Otherwise, Schick would have had to leave the lawn to stop the bleeding for good.
Only 120 seconds after the well-deserved Czech lead, Croatia had a huge chance to equalize quickly.
But Rebic, who is now earning his money at AC Milan, shot wide of the gate from close range.
Much better aimed shortly after the restart Perisic, who hit the far corner after a quick free kick from the left position.
However, the Czechs were unimpressed and remained the more active team.
Tomas Soucek (52nd) tried from distance, but just missed the goal.
A Schick header (61st) was also not precise enough.
The Croatians were better in the game than before the break, but were hardly dangerous. Only a shot by substitute Nikola Vlasic (72nd), which went past by a few centimeters, caught the Czechs briefly. Overall, however, the team, peppered with many first-class individualists, presented a largely disappointing performance.Keywords: