West Ham United midfielder Tomas Soucek was the Czech Republic skipper as they suffered extra time heartbreak against hosts Sweden in their playoff semifinal tie in path B as far as the European zone is concerned ahead of the World Cup tournament in Qatar later in the year. The West Ham United is an important player in the Czech Republic national team set-up but he was unable to prevent his team from suffering defeat at the hands of the Swedes.
Soucek and the Czechs didn’t qualify for the playoffs through the qualifying group like their hosts. They made it to the playoffs with Austria through the Nations League. West Ham United star Soucek was an ever-presentfor the Czech Republic as they finished third in their qualifying group thereby failing to make it to the playoffs through that route. Thanks to the Nations League, they were able to join ten other teams in the playoffs alongside Austria. For the Swedes, they were one of the ten teams who made it to the playoffs through the qualifying group after they finished second behind 2010 World Cup champions Spain in Group B.Spain recorded 19 points from eight matches, while Sweden had 15 points from eight matches.
Sweden were able to book their place in the playoff final from path B after Robin Quaison scored the winning goal on 110 minutes to lead his team to a 1-0 win over Soucek and the Czechs at the end of extra time. The two teams had to play an extra 30 minutes after failing to score in normal time.
The Swedes will now facePoland in the playoff final from path B for a place in Qatar. Poland didn’t have to face any team to reach the playoff final after semifinal opponents Russia were disqualified.