Hockey players trained for the Swedish Games for the first time, Mozík and assistant Erat met

Hokejisté started training for Švédské games, found Moziak and an assistant Erat

Training of the Czech hockey team before the Swedish Games, February 7, 2023, Prague.

Prague – Czech hockey players trained for the first time today before the Swedish Games, which will be the third tournament of the Euro Hockey Tour series in the season. Coach Kari Jalonen had all the called-up players available at Prague's Hvězda winter stadium, with the exception of defender Vojtěch Mozík, with whom he has agreed that he will eventually join the team at the venue of the tournament in Malmö. Assistant coach Martin Erat was also present.

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Hockey players first trained for the Švdské games, Moziak and assistant Erat arrived

Hockey players first trained for the Š dské games, they found Moz and assistant Erat

Hockey players first trained for Švédské games, schá Zeli Mozík and assistant Erat

Hokejisté first trained for the Švédské games, found Moziak and assistant Erat

Jalonen came to the interview with journalists with a decent beanie on his head. It best symbolized the conditions in which the national team trained. “The old hockey days,” said the former outstanding forward with a smile. “It's cold here, but I think everyone is enjoying it. Everything is fine. And I'm glad we're here,” assured Jalonen.

In accordance with the agreement from the previous days, Mozík, the defender of Swedish Rögle, was absent. “He somehow tried to play Saturday's game in Sweden, but he already felt that he was sick. We spoke with him on Sunday and we agreed that he will not travel here for training, but we will stay in touch. He already reported yesterday that he was feeling something better. He will eventually join us in Sweden. The good thing is that he lives some 70 kilometers from Malmö, so it won't be a problem. Let's believe that he will be healthy soon,” Jalonen explained.

Otherwise, the Finnish coach received no apology. “It doesn't happen very often,” Jalonen smiled. “Of course, it's good for us. Last time we lost Kempný and Sobotka, Stezka got sick, there were more players who couldn't. Now the situation is favorable in this respect. And here we have the players we wanted to have here.” he praised himself.

However, the assistant Erat was absent for personal reasons and it is not certain whether he will fly to the north of Europe. “We leave it up to him whether he wants to travel with us or prefer to stay here with his family. We would fully understand that,” said Jalonen.

The name of Dominik Lakatoš, whose management despite his excellent performances in the extra-league Vítkovice jersey, the national team was only approached when building the team for the Swedish Games.

“I know he's playing really well, but I can honestly say that only now will I have a role for him on the power play. It wasn't like that before. But I think he needs it. And we need him on the power play, because in ours role with them, he is one of the best players in the extra league. Now it's all coming together, he has that role and I'm really looking forward to seeing him play at the international level. He definitely deserved the opportunity,” Jalonen said.

The team does not yet have a designated captain. “We haven't talked about it yet. We'll probably make that decision only in Sweden,” the coach pointed out.

And his main goal for the tournament? “For me, it's important that I get a good feeling about the team again, about its attitude, about how the young players will complement the older ones. I think it's important that they meet in the same cabin like this. And I can to say that I really like to see players like Sobotka or Kovář here, who haven't been in the national team for some time now,” said Jalonen.

On Wednesday, the team will still train at Hvězda before flying to Malmö. On Thursday from 7:00 p.m., the Czechs will play there against home team Sweden, on Saturday at noon they will face Finland and on Sunday at the same time against Switzerland.