23 October 2019
Czech Superliga

Czech Superliga 2019/2020 Preview (+Prediction)

FBC Liberec against Vítkovice (Photo: Jaroslav Appeltauer)

The season has started in all major European leagues including the one in Czechia. One of the Top 4 leagues is sure to offer interesting matches and intense floorball.

FloorballToday writer and expert Petr Havej dives into the Czech Superliga. Let’s see what happened during the pre-season on the transfer market and how the teams are going into the new season. This article will show key arrivals and departures, star players, last season standing and what to expect from each team.

In this article, the teams are ranked according to our prediction of their final standing at the end of the upcoming season.


1. 1. SC TEMPISH Vítkovice

The reigning champion is looking strong again. They managed to keep the group from last year together (which used to be a problem of the team in the past) and even added some interesting prospects into the already strong group of players. Relying on the ‘Coach of the Season’ in Czechia Pavel Brus (who recently even joined the national team as an assistant coach), the team from the city of Ostrava (Champions Cup 2020 host city) is expected to be battling for the title once again.

One thing that could affect their league performance is the Champions Cup participation. If they succeed there, that could boost their league performance too.

Star players: Adam Delong, Josef Rýpar
Key arrivals/departures: Šimon Hatala (from Trenčín, SVK), Lukáš Hrubý (from Petrovice)
Exciting young players: Jiří Besta
Last season position: 1st

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Vítkovice beat FBC Liberec last round (Photo: Jaroslav Appeltauer)

2. Technology Florbal MB

The ambitious team from the city of Mladá Boleslav was very active at the transfer market once again. Acquiring two national team players, their roster looks really frightening. That doesn’t always mean success, especially when their new coach Petr Novotný – who retired after last season as a player (together with Jan Jelínek) – is not really experienced. But he most definitely has respect amongst the players, having been the captain of the team for a long time and being a club legend. MB has won their first title two seasons ago and they will surely want to take another one this year.

Star players: Jiří Curney, Jan Natov
Key arrivals/departures: Patrik Suchánek, Daniel Šebek (both from FC Helsingborg, SWE)/Josef Pluhař (to Unihockey Basel Regio, SUI), Jan Řehoř (to UHC Thun, SUI)
Exciting young players: Filip Zakonov
Last season position: 2nd


3. FAT PIPE FLORBAL CHODOV

The team from Prague has stabilized its roster and there were no major player moves before the season. Apart from the loss of club legend, goalkeeper Jan Barák, who has been replaced by experienced Michal Rebro, the strong group of players stayed together and they are hot contenders for challenging the two finalists from the last season.

Chodov has two solid lines consisting of great players. The key question is whether they can get better at defense, they conceded most goals out of top teams.

Star players: Tom Ondrušek, Marek Vávra, Martin Pražan
Key arrivals/departures: Michal Rebro (Tatran Střešovice)
Exciting young players: Martin Řezáč
Last season position: 4th

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Florbal Chodov in its opening game against Hummel Hattrick Brno (Photo: Ceskyflorbal)

4. ACEMA Sparta Praha

Sparta Praha is the upcoming team of the last two years. They made big progress in these last few years and are now considered to be the team for semi-finals (at least). However, their transfer market actions didn’t go as they might have imagined, losing some of their key players, Svatoš and Košir. Together, they produced 48 points last regular season, which is not a small number of points Sparta lost with the departure of these two snipers.

The key thing for them is to find new offensive players to produce points. It is hard to tell whether they’ll succeed or not, because the new players, although really talented, are still quite young. Sparta might be the dark horse of the competition.

Star players: Milan Garčar, Martin Beneš
Key arrivals/departures: Josef Juha, Jakub Kolstrunk (both from Bohemians), Kristián Kozák (ATU Košice, SVK)/Ondřej Svatoš (Unihockey Basel Regio, SUI), Robert Košir (Borovnica, SLO)
Exciting young players: Matyáš Velc
Last season position: 3rd


5. Tatran Teka Střešovice

The most successful club in the history of Czech Superliga has won 16 titles in 26 years of the competition (and never missed a season in the highest league). However, their last title is from the 2014/2015 season and the team struggled for the last four years. They didn’t make it to the semi-finals for two years straight, which is unprecedented for Tatran, but it was expected to happen at some point.

The successful generation has been replaced with young players, but the transition hasn’t gone smooth, rather really quick and rough. The problem is, they keep losing their key players, like Marek Beneš or Ondřej Vítovec, both going to Scandinavia, before the season. New generation players are still very young but hungry for success, and a lot of them are promised to have great careers. This season is maybe too soon for a major success, but they will get better.

Star players: Filip Langer, Milan Meliš
Key arrivals/departures: Martin Šindelář (Znojmo)/Marek Beneš (Pixbo, SWE), Ondřej Vítovec (EräViikingit, FIN)
Exciting young players: Jonáš Kreysa, Matěj Havlas
Last season position: 5th

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Tatran Teka Střešovice beat FBC 4CLEAN Česká Lípa 4-5 last round (Photo: Ceskyflorbal)

6. Hu-Fa PANTHERS OTROKOVICE

Otrokovice missed a playoff spot just once (2014/2015) since their first season in the Superliga in 2011/2012. Before this season they sort of rebuilt their roster with departure of older players in exchange for younger talents. And interesting talents they are: Petr Koláčný from relegated Bulldogs Brno is a U19 World Champion, Peter Nehila is the best scorer of the Slovakian Extraliga from last season. The team will rely on scorer Pešat and strong goaltending provided by Michajlovič.

Star players: Lukáš Pešat, Radovan Michajlovič, Matěj Kostka
Key arrivals/departures: Peter Nehila (from Nižná, SVK), Petr Koláčný (Bulldogs Brno), Filip Hrabal (Ostrava)/Marek Zapletal (to Ostrava), Tomáš Sovják (to Ostrava)
Exciting young players: Petr Koláčný
Last season position: 7th


7. FbŠ Bohemians

Another club from Prague with a long tradition. They never managed to get a spot in the semi-finals though. Bohemians are relying on their strong youth development but are perhaps lacking more experienced players. Goaltending is not so strong, that could cost them important points. With the comeback of good scorer Jakub Šárka and acquired experience from past seasons, Bohemians could have a word in a fight for the semifinals.

Star players: Jakub Šárka, Matyáš Krebner
Key arrivals/departures: Jakub Šárka (from Ticino, SUI)
Exciting young players: Filip Forman
Last season position: 8th

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FbŠ Bohemians played an outside game against Black Angels (Photo: Ceskyflorbal)

8. FBC Liberec

Liberec is slowly getting better and this might be the year for them to finally get one of the playoff spots. Last season it was close, but in the end, they found themselves back at the 9th place. Radek Valeš and Prokop Ferdan are very dangerous and youngsters are starting to join them. Painful might be the retirement of Petr Salát who produced a solid number of thirty points last season.

Star players: Radek Valeš, Prokop Ferdan
Key arrivals/departures: Vojtěch Hejduk (Turnov)/retirement of Petr Salát and Lukáš Veselý
Exciting young players: Adam Balatka
Last season position: 9th


9. FBC ČPP OSTRAVA

Ostrava made the playoffs last season at the last minute, and in the playoffs played a tight series against Chodov, which they eventually lost 4-1. Veteran superstar Aleš Zálesný (WFC 2008 Allstar team member) helped the team at the end of the season and he might be the reason why they got better and claimed the spot in the playoffs.

Howewer, Zálesný returned back to Switzerland after the season, the team also lost scorers Mendrek and Hrabal. Ostrava also sacked their coach after the first game (!) of the season which they lost against Liberec. It suggests something’s not right and it could be hard for them to pick up their form.

Star players: Jan Bauer, Michal Sládek
Key arrivals/departures: Jan Binder (from Kalmarsund), Tomáš Sovják, Marek Zapletal (both from Otrokovice)/Aleš Zálesný (to Regazzi Verbano, SUI), Jakub Mendrek (Thun, SUI), Filip Hrabal (Otrokovice)
Exciting young players: Matyáš Šindler
Last season position: 6th


10. FBŠ Hummel Hattrick Brno

The newcomers have their first season ever in the highest league ahead of them. But Hattrick Brno has a roster full of experienced players who already played Superliga with other teams. Their offense relies mostly on Luděk Ondráček and David Coufal, top scorers and very experienced players. The key question will be whether their defense can be good enough against better scorers in the highest league. The good thing is that there was no major departure from the team before the season.

Star players: Luděk Ondráček, David Coufal
Key arrivals/departures: Martin Nagy (from Otrokovice), Jakub Procházka (from Znojmo)
Exciting young players: Jonáš Kůra
Last season position: new

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FBŠ Hummel Hattrick Brno met Technology Florbal MB last round (Photo: Ceskyflorbal)

11. Black Angels

Another newcomer, this team from Prague. Black Angels has a very young squad, they rely on talented youngsters. The offense is directed by 23 years old Jakub Renčín who is expected to produce some point. A lot of expectations from Jakub and Matěj Boček, the 19 year-olds have a bright future ahead of them and it is going to be interesting to see how they can adapt to the highest level of play.

Star players: Jakub Renčín
Key arrivals/departures: Jaroslav Jaroš (from Karlovy Vary)
Exciting young players: Jakub Boček, Matěj Boček
Last season position: new


12. Sokoli Pardubice

Pardubice were in their first-ever playoff round two seasons ago, last season they dropped again to 12th. There are no big signs of improvement, no transfer market activity by them. It is hard to expect much from this team, they will need to collect as many points from home games as possible because they’ve got a good crowd support. If they will, they may succeed.

Star players: Martin Zozulák, Jan Kourek
Key arrivals/departures: Jan Bílý (retired)
Exciting young players: Martin Haleš
Last season position: 12th

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Sokoli Pardubice (Photo: ceskyflorbal)

13. FBC 4CLEAN Česká Lípa

Surprise of the last two season, as noone expected them to stay in the league so easily as they avoided play down matches two years straight. Radek Krajcigr helped a lot last season, he scored 41 goals, 3rd in the league in goals. In order to get some good result this year, they need to stay disciplined and avoid getting penalties (1st in penalty minutes last year) and be strong at home

Star players: Radek Krajcigr
Key arrivals/departures: /
Exciting young players: Jan Spilka
Last season position: 10th


14. TJ Sokol Královské Vinohrady

They managed to stay in the league last season. This year is going to be the second after their promotion to Superliga and they need to prove once again that they belong to this level. Noone really shines out, Petr Hartman was the scoring leader last season, but only with 28 points (33rd in the league). Return of Milan Bína from Sparta might help SKV’s offense, depends on the form of the former sniper, who came back after a serious illness.

Star players: Petr Hartman
Key arrivals/departures: Milan Bína (from Sparta)
Exciting young players: /
Last season position: 11th


Ranking

The competition has already started and the table looks like this (matches/points). It goes with the prediction quite well after the few rounds.

1. Technology Florbal MB 3/9
2. 1. SC TEMPISH Vítkovice 2/6
3. FAT PIPE FLORBAL CHODOV 2/6
4. ACEMA Sparta Praha 2/6
5. Tatran Teka Střešovice 2/6
6. Hu-Fa PANTHERS OTROKOVICE 3/5
7. FbŠ Bohemians 3/3
8. FBC Liberec 2/3
9. Sokoli Pardubice 2/3
10. FBŠ Hummel Hattrick Brno 3/1
11. FBC ČPP OSTRAVA 2/0
12. FBC 4CLEAN Česká Lípa 2/0
13. BLACK ANGELS 2/0
14. TJ Sokol Královské Vinohrady 2/0

This article was written by Petr Havej. If you have any questions or remarks, feel free to contact us.

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