CFR Cluj hosts Slavia Prague in the first leg of the Champions League qualification finals. The match will be played on Tuesday, August 20th at Stadionul Dr. Constantin Rădulescu (Cluj-Napoca)
No one believed in Cluj in the confrontation with Astana, and then with Celtic. I speak honestly! The Romanian club was my favorite in both battles! First of all, I was amazed by a very good coach of Cluj, Dan Petrescu! He revived even dead teams in the Russian championship. It is difficult to find familiar names in the squad of Cluj, and there are enough legionnaires, but there is probably no one more or less familiar to the wide audience. Cluj’s move is now amazing! After the defeat in the Super Cup of the country and the first match with Astana in the first qualifying round, the men of Petrescu had no more losses. And the team has played TEN matches in various tournaments since then! I think that the opponents should start looking at Cluj from a different angle after the elimination of Celtic. And the upcoming rival of the Romanians is absolutely no better than the same Celts, so we should wait for the continuation of the banquet from Cluj!
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Slavia got such an opportunity as to start qualifying only in the fourth round, that is, the team already has European cups! If the Czechs lose the confrontation to the Romanians, they will go to the Europa League group anyway. Let’s see how such a thing will affect the Czech team since all rivals have been playing qualifying games for a long time, and someone has been doing it for more than a month. Slavia will start from the fourth round at once. I think that such a thing can play a bad joke with the team... In the championship, there can be no complaints to the Czech team. 13 points out of 15 are scored, but it cannot be a guarantee of a good game in European competitions! By the way, you can recall the last season, when Slavia started its way to the Champions League in the third round, and the team didn’t succeed... The Czechs lost the two-match confrontation to Dynamo Kyiv (1:3) And if someone says that Kyiv is stronger than Cluj, I will just laugh! Since Ukrainian teams are dynamically going west in recent years...
I think that Romanian Cluj is a small favorite of the upcoming match. The team has played in this qualification for a long time. It beat two strong rivals, and there is one more step left until the long-awaited return to the Champions League group! And the men of Petrescu can take this step. I think that they won’t lose in the home match.
Prediction for the match: CFR Cluj to win with +0.5 handicap