Cech battles to overcome his fear of the penalty

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The Independent Football

The Chelsea and Czech Republic goalkeeper Petr Cech has had some recent practice in case tomorrow's Group A decider against Turkey at Euro 2008 finishes in a penalty shoot-out.

Cech could only stop one spot kick when Chelsea lost the Champions League final to Manchester United in a shoot-out last month. Now, the Czechs and Turks play in Geneva for a quarter-final berth with the same points and goal difference, meaning it will end in spot-kicks should they draw.

"It's better than a toss of a coin," Cech said. "We have it all in our hands. I believe that penalties won't have to take place at all and we'll beat Turkey. It would be a tricky thing to play for a draw. Everything is at stake. I believe we belong to the best eight teams. The team's performance is on the rise, we'll play our best in our last game in the group stage."

The Czechs have had a positive record in shoot-outs at previous Euros. As part of Czechoslovakia, they won the 1976 title after drawing 2-2 with West Germany, and did the same in the third-place match against Italy four years later following a 1-1 draw. At Euro 96, the Czechs eliminated France in the semi-finals in a shoot-out. "We'll be training for a possible penalty shoot-out, but that's not our major concern," coach Karel Brückner said. "Our goal is to play well and win."

The Czechs beat Switzerland 1-0 in their opener, then lost 3-1 to Portugal. Turkey lost 2-0 to Portugal but rallied to beat the Swiss 2-1.

Turkey (probable, 4-3-3): Volkan (Fenerbahce); Altintop (Bayern Munich), Servet (Galatasaray), Gokhan (Besiktas), Hakan (Galatasaray); Kazim-Richards (Fenerbahce), Emre (Fenerbahce), Aurelio (Fenerbahce); Erdinc (Sochaux), Nihat (Villarreal), Tuncay (Middlesbrough).

Suspended: None.

Czech Republic (probable, 4-3-2-1): Cech (Chelsea); Grygera (Juventus), Ujfalusi (Fiorentina), Rozehnal (Lazio), Jankuloski (Milan); Galasek (Nuremberg), Polak (Anderlecht), Sionko (Copenhagen); Baros (Portsmouth), Plasil (Osasuna); Koller (Nuremberg).

Suspended: None.

Referee: P Fröjdfeldt (Sweden).

Misses next match if booked: Turkey: Aurelio, Zan, Balta, Kazim-Richards, Sarioglu. Czech Republic: Polak.

Turkey v Czech Republic Tomorrow, 19.45, Geneva, ITV1

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