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MISMATCH OF THE DAY; Pub side play Czech professionals.

Byline: BRIAN ROBERTS

AN amateur football club decided to end their season in style with a short tour in the Czech Republic.

But when they turned up for their first game, some nursing hangovers from the famed Prague lager, they realised someone had made a very big mistake.

The Sunday pub league team had been matched with Czech Second Division side FK Meteor.

A language mix-up meant their hosts thought they were playing English First Division outfit Stockport County FC instead of Stockport Town - a district league side.

Around 1000 Czech fans had bought tickets for the clash, with programmes printed and radio commentators ready for a live updates on the game to be broadcast.

The 24-strong squad were nervous enough when they saw the stadium.

But they were overawed by Meteor's trophy room with pictures of ex-Manchester United winger Karel Poborski and Lazio midfielder Pavel Nedved, who both began at the club.

Senior officials from the Czech FA were presented to the players as they lined up just before kick-off.

The Czechs only realised halfway through a 14-1 hammering that the opposition were imposters.

Meteor and their fans managed to see the funny side, however, and at the final whistle gave a standing ovation to the amateurs.

Town manager Peter Healey, 35, blamed the embarrassing mix-up on language problems.

He said: "I had contacted their FA looking to organise a couple of matches and explained that we are an amateur side. I explained we had finished fourth in our league and got to the final of our cup.

"Something must have got lost in translation!

"It was a fantastic experience, though, and I wouldn't change it for the world."

Meteor changed their line-up at half-time, at 9-0 up.

Thankfully, word reached their next opponents, FC Strichlov, who had one fulll Czech international and had just won the second division.

They played several reserves - but still ran up a 16-3 scoreline.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2001 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jun 13, 2001
Words:321
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