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Sister: X Factor Birmančević Ensured Sparta Won the Mol Cup and the First Double After 10 Years

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After winning the championship title at the weekend, Sparta also won the domestic cup. In the dramatic final, which progressed in the final fifteen minutes, Pilsen won 2:1. The hero of the match was Veljko Birmančevič, who was playing in the best form, who shone with a 1+1 record and scored the Prague team’s first double since 2013/14. But his brilliance significantly reduced the excess of fans of both teams after the final whistle, against which the heavy-duty had to intervene.

In the 79th minute, West Bohemia’s defender Sampson Dweh opened the scoring with an unfortunate own goal, who shortly before had sealed the post with an eye-pleasing shot in a goalless situation.

Viktoria finished without the league’s top scorer Pavel Šulec, who received a red card in the 85th minute, but Tomáš Chorý equalized a moment later. In the first minute of the set time, however, Birmančević made the decision in the continuing power play.

Sister: X Factor Birmančević Ensured Sparta Won the Mol Cup and the First Double After 10 Years.

Sparta appeared in the final for the third time in a row and succeeded in it after the previous two failures. The new champions won the MOL Cup after four years and for the eighth time overall in their separate history, which is the most of all Czech teams. Pilsen, on the other hand, did not get revenge for the defeat in the final in 2014 and did not achieve its second triumph since the division of the federation.

“Winning the double means a lot not only for me, but for everyone. We play football to win trophies. It’s hard, the Czech league is hard, this cup season was challenging. To win two trophies is amazing,” said Sparta’s Danish coach Brian Priske.

Vorel got a chance in the Spartan goal in the fifth game of this year’s MOL Cup, and number one Vindahl remained on the bench.

There was an excellent atmosphere in the Doosan Arena from the start, but the fans did not see many chances in the first half. In the 14th minute, Krejčí ran onto Laci’s cross from the left side and beat goalkeeper Jedlička with his head. However, referee Berka noticed that earlier in the fight he hit the home team’s Červ in the face with his hand, and the offensive foul was subsequently confirmed by the video referee.

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Viktoria did not threaten Vorl during the entire first half, but only a few seconds after the change of sides, he forced the Spartan goalkeeper to make a difficult save with a hard shot from behind the Vydra goal. On the other side, Dweh headed the ball into the corner in front of Birmančević at the last moment.

In the 53rd minute, Vydra had another chance, but missed the goal. It should be noted that the West Bohemians were more dangerous in the second half and in the 63rd minute they were inches away from taking the lead. Dweh’s shot hit the post.

Birmančevič decided the dramatic conclusion.

In the middle of the second half, referee Berka temporarily interrupted the final due to smoke from pyrotechnics in the Pilsen “cauldron”. After the subsequent corner, Chorý headed in and Dweh was just a short distance away from hitting the ball in the small area. In the 75th minute, substitute Kliment could have opened the scoring shortly after arriving on the pitch, but he only headed the Spartan goalkeeper from close range.

Pilsen were better after the change of sides, but Prague opened the scoring. In the 79th minute, Kliment was left lying on the pitch after a fight with Ryneš, Berka let the game continue, the subsequent long kick into the goal was kept in front of the line by Birmančevič, and goalkeeper Jedlička unluckily deflected the ball to Dweh, from whom the ball went into the net.  “The Pilsen defender probably thought that I wouldn’t be able to catch the ball on the pitch, but I believed it the whole time. I just tried to center it, sometimes you need luck,” said Birmančevič.

In the 85th minute, referee Berka awarded the league’s top scorer Šulc with a second yellow card to his surprise for a minor drag, and Viktoria went to ten. Even in a weakened state, they equalized in just two minutes, after a jam, gunner Chorý pushed the ball into the net with his head from close range.

The Spartans then decided in a short power play. In the first minute of regulation, after a series of passes in the box, Vitík tapped the ball to Birmančevič and he beat Jedlička. In a nervous ending, which was accompanied by jostling between the players and the benches, the people of Prague kept the win. After the match, several dozen fans from both camps got onto the lawn, and heavy-duty police had to prevent larger clashes.

Letenští in Pilsen won only for the second time out of the last sixteen competitive matches and made up for the March league debacle 0:4 from Doosan Arena. The Czech team achieved the double after three years, in 2021 it was won by Slavia.

“Of course defeat hurts. We were as close to winning as the opponent, the luckier one won, there’s no doubt about that. At 0-0, we had our goalscoring scenes, unfortunately we hit the post, something flew just wide. It turned to our side and then came an unfortunate moment in the form of an own goal,” said Pilsen coach Miroslav Koubek, who previously played for Sparta and worked as an assistant there.

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