Euro 2020 shop window: Czech mates could lure young gun Hlozek to Hammers

The Sparta Prague breakout star didn’t get the chance to shine on the international stage but he could still make a move to the Premier League if Soucek and Coufal have their way, writes Alasdair Hooper.

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We may only have seen fleeting appearances at Euro 2020, but Adam Hlozek is undoubtedly one to watch in the future.

The 18-year-old Czech Republic forward had appeared as a substitute in each of his nation’s games at the tournament, before being omitted in the quarter-final loss to Denmark, but there is a lot of talk about this young striker.

Last season, he made 23 appearances for Sparta Prague, managing eight assists and 15 goals in that time. When you consider his season was disrupted by injury and isolation that is some return.

His achievements don’t stop there either. In October 2018, he became the youngest player in Sparta’s history when he made his first-team debut at the age of 16 years and 70 days. In 2019, he was also named Czech talent of the year. 

Former Arsenal midfielder, and Czech Republic legend, Tomas Rosicky is one man who admires him hugely and he knows a thing or two about football. Granted, he is currently Sparta’s sporting director – so is evidently biased – but he lauded Hlozek as a “great talent” shortly before the striker signed his first professional deal.

In terms of Hlozek’s playing style he is incredibly good at getting into excellent scoring positions, particularly getting hold of the ball in the box before taking a shot when the opportunity arises. He’s also brilliant in one v one situations and is useful in the air.

So, what of his future? Much might have rested on how he excelled in Euro 2020 but there will still be interest despite his relatively low game time.

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He recently signed a new three-year contract that expires in 2024, and Sparta don’t want to lose him, but inevitably the rumour mill is buzzing. One club that keeps coming up in the conversation is West Ham, which is partly down to them needing a striker and also because of the presence of two Czech stars – Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal.

If Hlozek was to move to East London and have a similar impact as those two, then that would be an incredibly promising sign. It’s also worth saying that Soucek and Hlozek share an agent.

According to recent reports Liverpool have also supposedly joined the band of clubs monitoring the striker, along with the likes of Bayern Munich, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund although game time there would be something to consider.

Of course, it’s also worth repeating Hlozek is still just 18 and has so much time ahead of him; a rushed transfer doesn’t have to happen now and there have been plenty of examples of players moving too soon.

But there is no doubting the forward’s talent and, while he may not have starred at Euro 2020, it won’t be long before he is tearing it up at international and domestic level.

You can follow Alasdair on Twitter @adjhooper1992

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