The Czech Republic must go on the attack against Croatia or risk being eliminated from Euro 2016, according to veteran midfielder Tomas Rosicky.
After losing 1-0 to Spain in their Group D opener, the Czechs travel to Saint-Etienne to face a Croatia side that beat Turkey by the same scoreline courtesy of a goal from Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric.
Having managed just seven attempts on goal compared to Spain’s 17 in their first game, Rosicky believes his team-mates must be more incisive going forward if they are to get off the mark in the tournament.
“We have to take the positive things from the Spain game and build upon them,” he said. “Everyone played well and sacrificed a lot and we want to continue with this, with fighting and with cohesion. That’s what we need.
“We need to show something more in attack. We need to be better in the end situations.
“We know about the situations against Spain where we were unsuccessful, and want to be better next time.”
With Modric at Madrid and fellow midfielder Ivan Rakitic playing his club football at Barcelona, Croatia have strong links with Spanish football, but Rosicky expects a different style of play from Ante Cacic’s team.
He said: “There are differences in the style between Spain and Croatia. The Spanish play tiki-taka football, whereas Croatia are more straightforward.
“Technically they are similar, but Croatia don’t make as many passes. Their style is different.
“[Rakitic and Modric] are the driving force of the Croatian team, with one of them at Barcelona and one at Madrid.
“If I get the task of playing against Modric then I will do that. But I will fulfil whatever role the coach gives me.”