Galásek hopes for an important sporting year

If anyone deserves a vacation, it is Tomás Galásek. The Czech midfielder played the most matches of all Ajax players so far. He mainly uses the winter break to see his friends and rest.

How do you celebrate Christmas and New Year’s?
,,Christmas we celebrate with the family, with my wife’s parents. We have dinner together. Traditionally, we have pea-soup as a starter – seriously – and then carp with potato salad. Until that evening we don’t eat meat – but usually we can’t quite manage that. And after dinner, we open the presents. New year’s eve, I usually get together with my wife and some friends. The children aren’t always involved. Sometimes we go to a bar. Other times we stay at a hotel in the mountains. At midnight, we set off the fireworks. I sometimes do that myself, but only if it’s safe, of course. We mostly drink schnapps, I’m not a big fan of champagne. But there’s plenty of things I do like to drink, I like wine or have some beer. We stay up as long as it is fun, we just play it by ear. It can get quite late, occasionally…’’

What was the most important thing that happened to you in 2002, both in sport and in your personal life?
,,The most important thing as far as my career is concerned, is that I made a good return to the team, after an injury and a less successful period. The squad has remained a good one. We have gelled together as a team, and that has helped our luck and our performances and success. Winning the league was one of the highlights of my career.’’
,,In my personal life, not a lot has happened really. Me and my family are doing ok, the situation is nice and stable.’’

Your expectations for 2003?
,,Hopefully, it will be much the same as 2002 has been. Stay in the cup for as long as we can and win the league again. We’re doing unexpectedly well in the Champions League, that is something we should try and continue. I expect that both Ajax and the Czech Republic national team will be very succesful again, and I’m hoping that for me personally this will be an important year in my career.’’

With whom would you like to have a glass of champagne?
,,First, with my wife. Then with the rest of the family and after that, anyone I see!’’