Brussels: Veteran striker Jan Koller scored an opportunistic goal in the opening minutes and set up another to lead the Czech Republic to a 2-0 win over Belgium in a Wednesday friendly. The Monaco forward eluded Bayern Munich defender Daniel Van Buyten in the sixth minute and got a leg to a corner kick to beat goalkeeper Stijn Stijnen from close range. With the Czechs outplaying Red Devils for most of the match, Marek Kulic sealed the victory in the 74th, exploiting another defensive error and taking a pass from Koller to send a drive high into the net outside the reach of substitute keeper Brian Vandenbussche. The victory extended the Czechs unbeaten streak to six games since a 3-1 friendly loss to Serbia in August. The Czechs share the lead in European Championship qualifying Group D with Germany. Kollar to retire Belgium is in fifth place in Group A, four points behind group leader Finland. The Red Devils finished the game with 10 men after defender Anthony Van den Borre was sent off for pulling down the Kulic in the 85th minute. The Czechs are preparing for a European qualifier against Germany next month while the Red Devils will face Portugal, which beat Brazil on Tuesday. Koller's performance comes within a week of the 33-year-old striker's announcement that he will retire after the 2008 European Championship and return home after playing 12 years with foreign clubs. Koller, the Czech Republic's career scoring leader with 48 goals in 75 internationals, said he will complete his contract with Monaco, which expires at the end of next season. The loss likely will renew criticism of manager Rene Vandereycken with Belgium having suffered its second straight loss at home. It lost 1-0 to Poland in November in European qualifying.
Topics : Football