Jiracek - We deserved it

Czech hero feels his side were worthy winners against Poland

Petr Jiracek: Czech Republic hero scores only goal of the game against Poland

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Czech Republic hero Petr Jiracek insisted his side were worthy winners against Poland as they booked their place in the quarter-finals of Euro 2012.

Jiracek scored the only goal of the game on a tense night in Wroclaw, linking up well with Milan Baros before slotting the ball beyond Przemyslaw Tyton in the 72nd minute.

Despite suffering a 4-1 drubbing at the hands of Russia in their opening Group A clash, Michal Bilek's side are through to the last eight as group winners, with Greece joining them following their shock 1-0 success against Russia.

The Czechs were content to soak up pressure from Poland in the first period and then, when news filtered through from the other game that a victory was needed, stepped up a gear after the break.

"We had a poor start but we gradually improved, started to create chances and finally, we deserved to score," Jiracek said.

Started badly

The co-hosts came close to snatching a leveller in the closing moments when Michal Kadlec produced a superb goalline clearance to deny Jakub Blaszczykowski.

For goalkeeper Petr Cech, the success marked a much-needed clean sheet and confidence boost after his uncharacteristic error against Greece.

"We started badly and let the occasion get to us a little bit, the home side capitalised on our mistakes," admitted the Chelsea No.1.

"But with time we got better, we created chances and then scored a deserved goal.

"We knew the result (of the other game), they told us and we could see it on a screen, but we focused on ourselves, decided not to wait for miracles and to score instead."