Milan Baros grabbed a late equaliser for the Czech Republic, but a draw against neighbours and Group 3 leaders Slovakia was not the result the visitors wanted. Needing to win to press their claims for a second-place finish in the group, the Czech Republic twice had to come from behind just to claim a point.
Slovakia led on both occasions thanks to goals from Stanislav Sestak and Marek Hamsik, who netted a penalty, however Daniel Pudil and substitute Baros at least ensured the Czechs were not beaten.
Slovakia goalkeeper Jan Mucha was kept busy in the early stages and had to save well from Jaroslav Plasil's free-kick in the second minute. Then Michal Kadlec headed over the bar a minute later and Pudil should have punished slack Slovakian defending soon afterwards, but had Mucha make a routine save.
Slovakia's first attempt involved Filip Holosko shooting from 20 yards, but Petr Cech dealt with the danger, and then the Chelsea goalkeeper had to save from Hamsik. Jiri Stajner missed a decent chance from 12 yards when he fired just wide, while Slovakia ended the first half on top as Hamsik and Jan Durica both threatened Cech's goal.
Cech saved from Robert Vittek shortly after the resumption, but Slovakia took the lead after Sestak drove home Vittek's cross on the hour mark. Hamsik shot over before the Slovakian defence gifted Pudil his equaliser, with the winger tucking the ball home from 15 yards.
Slovakia were awarded a penalty in the 73rd minute after Radoslav Zabavnik was brought down and Hamsik fired home from the spot before being booked for his celebrations. Hamsik was then sent off barely a minute later after committing a foul and receiving his second yellow card.
Baros had replaced Jan Koller and proved his scoring instincts by heading home from close range in the 84th minute. With Slovakia down to ten men, the Czech side piled on the pressure late on, but they remain seven points off top spot.