GLASGOW (Reuters) - The Czech Republic's ability to withstand early pressure in their Euro 2020 opener against Scotland on Monday was crucial before Patrik Schick's "out-of-this world" long-range strike sealed their 2-0 win, Czech coach Jaroslav Silhavy said.
Roared on by a loud Hampden Park crowd, Scotland piled forward in the early stages but the Czechs defended stoutly and were bailed out by big saves from goalkeeper Tomas Vaclik.
"We expected them to push from the very beginning but we managed that," Silhavy told reporters. "We defended well and when they got behind our lines it was saved by our goalie."
Silhavy also singled out Schick after the Bayer Leverkusen forward opened the scoring in the first half with a header before his astonishing effort from 45 metres, the furthest distance from which a goal has ever been scored at a European Championship.
Silhavy said the goal, in which Schick caught the Scottish keeper off his line and looped in a shot, was the kind of effort the player has attempted before in matches and training.
"We know he is a genius and he knows how to finish," Silhavy said. "The second goal was something out of this world. He likes to try that in training and he tried it in one of our previous games as well."
The result left the Czechs on three points, level at the top of Group D with England, who beat Croatia 1-0 on Sunday, while Scotland will already be feeling nervous about their prospects ahead of their next game against England on Friday when the Czechs face Croatia.
Silhavy said the win will ease the pressure on the Czechs who can prepare knowing a draw in either of their next matches could send them into the knockout stages.
"I'm not saying we have it in the bag but we only need to make one more step to get out of the group," Silhavy said.
(Reporting by Michael Kahn, Additional reporting by Robert Muller, Editing by Ed Osmond)