World Cup qualification: Austria struggles to win

World Cup qualification: Austria struggles to win

Before kick-off, a drone circling around the stadium required a lot of patience. The game started half an hour late due to security reasons. After that, the Austrians barely managed to put to shame the dense line of defense of the Moldavians. Accuracy and determination were often lacking against a technically limited opponent. A low shot from Christoph Baumgartner shortly before the break (45th) and a last-minute hit from Marko Arnatovic (94th) was enough for the inevitable victory in the end.

After hard-earned success in Moldova, two more trend-setting major games await FB selection over the next seven days in the race for a permanent spot at the World Cup final in Qatar. On Saturday, Austria will face Israel (7 each), who beat the Faroe Islands 4-0 (3-0) in Haifa. At the end of the World Cup qualifying triple, on Tuesday (8.45 pm, live on ORF1) in Vienna, Scotland, who are now five points behind Austria in fourth place.

Reuters / Gleb Garanicho

Thanks to Baumgartner’s goal, the FB team remains arithmetically in the race for a permanent place at the World Cup in Qatar

Alaba only replacement after muscle problems

Given the failures of several key players – Marcel Sabitzer, Xaver Schlager, Sasa Kalaczyk, Stefan Lenner and Julian Baumgartlinger were injured – and with the sight of two more difficult games within the next seven days, Foda was forced to make amends. had gone. Since Real star David Alaba had a muscle problem during the final training session the day before, the 55-year-old German made some surprising starting eleven submissions.

Like Alaba, defensive routine Alexander Dragovic was only an option for some time. Foda gave the 30-year-old a break after three games last week. Christopher Trimmel, Philipp Leonhardt, Martin Hintergeger and Andreas Ulmer formed the chain of defence. Previously, Florian Grillitsch and Konrad Laimer had played in midfield and Louis Schaub and Baumgartner had played in the wings. Michael Gregoritz started in the storm with Marko Arnautovi, who even in the absence of the injured Julian Baumgartlinger wore the captain’s bow instead of alaba.

Drone launch delayed in Chisinau

“We want to try to build up the pressure from the first minute and score a quick goal,” Foda said in an interview with ORF before the game. At the same time, the OFB team owner knew that due to Moldovan’s defensive style of play, a lot of patience would be required. As before the start of the game, when the Austrian national anthem took a long time to arrive due to technical problems and red-white-red fans came in, and again when a drone hovering over the stadium kicked-off. delayed in

English referee Paul Tierney initially refused to whistle the game while the drone was over the field. Players were also sent back from the pitch to the dressing room. It was only after about 20 minutes that the pilot – a little boy according to unconfirmed reports – could be traced. The game finally started at 9:15 pm CEST with a delay of half an hour.

Passing play lacks accuracy

And as feared, the Austrians initially found it difficult to find gaps against deeper opponents. In addition, Gryllitz & Co. also lacked accuracy after winning the ball in the shift game and fast game forward. In any case, it was not due to possession of the ball, after about 20 minutes the statisticians showed a rate of about 70:30 percent in favor of the Austrians. However, the goal was still 0-0.

Baumgartner passes over the gate (20th minute)

Trimmel crosses Baumgartner just fine, but the ball goes over the net.

The duel with No. 175 in the FIFA world rankings lasted until the 20th minute before the first notable offensive action. With a cross from Trimmel, Baumgartner positioned himself perfectly on five between the two Moldovans, but did not manage to push the ball, which clearly flew over the goal. Shortly after, Arnautovic tried it from afar. The ball bounced dangerously past Moldova goalkeeper Kristian Avram, but then clearly went past the left bar (24).

Baumgartner redeems FB-Elf before the break

Moldovans, on the other hand, also presented themselves as captain Artur Ioanita’s header for the first time. His attempt turned out to be clearly wrong (28th). Goalkeeper Daniel Bachmann did not need to intervene, but by now he and those in front of him had been warned that the duel with Moldova would certainly not be successful. Especially nothing progressed in the middle. However, shortly after, the Austrians showed how it could work.

In the 34th minute, Schaub dribbled from the right side into the penalty area and – somewhat happily – put on Baumgartner, whose volley was turned away by Avram. Soon after, Lamar staged Arnoutovic in a free kick variant at the edge of the penalty area. His attempted shot would have been of more concern to Drone before the start of the game (37th). Nevertheless, it did not go goalless in the dressing room, as the FB team was still hit: Baumgartner took a deposit from Arnoutovic at the edge of the penalty area and the ball was unbeaten in the right corner (45th) to Avram’s flat. happened.

Austrian fans cheer

APA / AFP / Bogdan Tudor

FB fans traveling with him were not rewarded with a gala, but unlike the team, he was in top form.

Despite a weak performance in the first 45 minutes, the game changed little after the break: Austria lacked ideas, Moldova lacked the means. Team boss Foda initially waived the personnel change and tried to bring Laimer a breath of fresh air after only 60 minutes, substituting Erkan Cara instead of Michael Gregoritsch and Alessandro Schöf.

Arnatovic scores 2-0

In stoppage time, Arnautovic scored the final 2–0.

More than a long shot from Hinteregger (70th), Cara’s effort in the side netting (72nd) and a corner kick (76th) followed by a header from Hinteregger again did not look out. In the end came Stefan Ilsunker and Alaba, who replaced the ailing goal scorer Baumgartner. But not much came together after that until Real star Alaba pushed Arnoutovic through a dream pass in stoppage time. Bologna Legionnaires went up to 2-0, but could not hide a playful performance.

Voices for the game:

frank shit (ÖFB Team Boss): “We sometimes made life difficult for ourselves because we were too complicated in the last third. We weren’t determined and purposeful enough. Then we addressed it at halftime. Used to be casual, it shouldn’t be like that. There were always stages. If we kept the pace, we had clear chances to score.

“Sure, the win was deserved. But it’s just annoying that we didn’t perform more than 90 minutes to satisfy me. We were the best and we had a lot of authority. We should have closed the sack earlier.” But the opponent didn’t have a chance to score. We have done the duty. In the end we had to improvise during and before the game. You saw there was a lack of spontaneity and automaticity. Defensively we were actually very stable. , were very stable.”

Marko Arnautovic (Austrian goalscorer): “In the past you always said it was easy against opponents like this. It is true that we have to win these games, but seen that it is not that easy. You made a good defense. But we still showed quality and won with confidence. Of course I had my chances and I had to score a goal or two. This win was necessary, we got three points. But now we are preparing for Israel.”

Martin Hinteregger (Defender Austria): “If you’re not challenged as a defender for 90 minutes, it’s definitely better to go fast 2-0, 3-0. But never let us go from behind.” Not challenged. They were very passive. If we score already, it will look different. Everyone did as much as they should have. That’s why the game looks like this.”

World Cup Qualification, Group F, Fourth Match Day

Wednesday:

Moldova – Austria 0: 2 (0: 1)

Chisinau, Zimbru Stadium, 4,700 Zuschauer, SR Tierney (England)

target sequence:
0:1 Baumgartner (45.)
0: 2 Arnautovic (94.)

Moldova: Avram – Jordan, Posmac, Potyrnich (84./Bolohan), Rebsiuk – Platica (84./Antoniuk), Dros, Ionita, Belousov (73./Marandici) – Ginsari (59./Bogasyuk) – Ghisev (59./Spataru) ) )

Austria: Bachmann – Trimmel, Lionhardt, Hinteregger, Ulmer – Grylitsch (82./Ilsunker) – Schaub (77./Kainz), Laimer (62./Schopf), Baumgartner (83./Alaba) – Gregoritz (62./Kara), arnautovic

Yellow card: Rebusiuk, Belousov or none

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