Czech's Too Strong

AUSTRALIA has gone down 3-1 to the world number two ranked CZECH REPUBLIC, in a soccer friendly in Teplice overnight.

After sustained pressure in the opening moments of the first half by the home side, the LG Socceroos conceded the first goal of the match in the 10th minute, failing to clear a corner, with the goal headed in by Milan Fukal.<

AUSTRALIA has gone down 3-1 to the world number two ranked CZECH REPUBLIC, in a soccer friendly in Teplice overnight.

After sustained pressure in the opening moments of the first half by the home side, the LG Socceroos conceded the first goal of the match in the 10th minute, failing to clear a corner, with the goal headed in by Milan Fukal.

Striker MARK VIDUKA had the LG Socceroos- best chance to even the scores in the first half, beating several defenders in a solo run in the 30th minute, before his shot was stopped by the goalkeeper.

Midfielder JOSIP SKOKO almost leveled the scores just 6 minutes into the second half, his shot from outside of the box parried over the bar by the Czech keeper, but the Australians fell further behind just a couple of minutes later, Jan Koller scoring his 12th goal from 12 games after a successful counter attack.

The Czech Republic-s third goal was scored in the 66th minute after another counter-attack, which was finished off by Ivo Ulich, while Australia-s consolation goal came in the dying minutes of the game, CRAIG FOSTER posting his name on the scoreboard, after the Czech defence failed to clear a corner.

FULL TIME CZECH REPUBLIC 3 (Milan Fukal 10-, Jan Koller 53-, Ivo Ulich 66-) AUSTRALIA 1 (Craig Foster 88-) Venue: Na Stinadlech Stadium, Teplice

LG Socceroo Line-up: Zeljko Kalac (gk); Kevin Muscat (Luke Casserly 69-), Shaun Murphy, Tony Popovic, Jason van Blerk (Richard Johnson 78-), Stan Lazaridis, Paul Okon [c], Josip Skoko, Steve Corica (Craig Foster 55-), Mark Viduka, Paul Agostino (Clayton Zane 69-)

From the Coach - FRANK FARINA

“We got off to a bit of a bad start, where in the initial 10 to 15 minutes, we gave away some silly free kicks, gave away possession in bad areas, and got punished for it by having the goal scored against us just 10 minutes in.

“After that, the boys settled and played really well for the last 20 minutes or so of the first half, we had our chances, and we went into the second half on a positive note.

“Their second goal came from the chances we were creating at the other end, it came on the break, and showed a bit of naivete on our behalf, with too many players forward, which caught us on the quick break.

“That was also the story of the third goal, a chance to Mark Viduka saw them catch us on the break again, we should have sat someone back, and we didn-t.

“Overall, I thought the boys played quite well, but the bottom line is that they caught us out twice - we got caught on a couple of occasions and we paid for it - but we-ll also learn from it.”