For Rapid, only victory over Tyrol matters, because in case of defeat, the pressure before the derby match in a week in Austria will be great. Therefore, coach Zoran Barisic wants to finish everything before the duel with the arch-rival. However, Barysic warned: “The tension is there, it’s meant to be there and it’s certainly not artificial.” But “as a fast player you have to be able to handle the pressure”.
The fourth place in the table is four points ahead of the seventh-placed Austria Klagenfurt, and with the correct results in the parallel matches, one point could be enough for Green White to secure a place in the championship group. However, Barisic does not want to get involved in arithmetic games. “I want us to win, to perform well, to build on the Salzburg game and put everything we can on the field, regardless of what things are like on the other grounds.”
WS coach Thomas Silberger is looking forward to “a great game. We have nothing to lose. We can just win everything. Accordingly, we have to be brave and enjoy the game. There are much worse situations for a player than two days before the end” of the starting round to be able to decide Participation in the main group – for both teams.
Just a week after starting the ripper in Rapid, Salzburg will face LASK from 5 p.m. Once again a full house and a difficult task awaits the leaders of the Bundesliga. LASK spun the upset after 1-1 in the first duel of the season. “We want to bring them to their knees,” said Dietmar Kohbauer, coach of the third-placed team, who represented his opponents aggressively in the group of champions.
In the second match at the new stadium, he also announced the support of the ranks. While there were 12,000 fans at the premiere against Austria’s Lustenau two weeks ago, who populated Gugl’s 19,000 new “temples”, this time the “sold out” mark will be scratched off.
On their way to a tenth consecutive championship title, Salzburg does not want to be held back by a new stadium or Linz’s good form. “We are also in a good mood and we want to continue our series in the league,” coach Matthias Gisli said a few days after the 4-2 win over Rapid. The last seven matches have all been won, and the only defeat of the season so far dates back to July 30, 2022 (1:2 against Sturm Graz).
Austria is well on its way to the championship group, but the two toughest stages are yet to come. In the first leg in Sturm Graz, Vienna could already finish in the top six with outside help by winning. Michael Wimmer saw the match as “a huge challenge”. The new Austrian coach won three out of four matches in the spring. In fifth place, Violet is currently one point ahead of Rapid, one ahead of WSG Tyrol and two ahead of Austria Klagenfurt. Perhaps Austria should watch the competition. Wimmer can only focus on his eleven. Storm is a favorite, of course, “but we still want to play our game and compete with them.”
Sturm’s returnee is called Christian Elzer. After falling ill, the coach returned to the sidelines. The staff on the field probably won’t change. Players like Otar Kiteishvili, William Böving and Albian Ajeti, who have been injured for weeks, are being built up “step by step with a clear plan”, Ilzer noted. “Hopefully, when the tournament squad starts, it will be ready to go and we can start with a full squad.” A home win will be important for Sturm with a view of the table so that the gap with the leader does not become double digits.
Klagenfurt is still two wins away from participating in the next championship group. If the Carinthians win at home against TSV Hartberg and a week later away against Austria Lustenau, the surprise team will be in the top six like last year.
Coach Peter Pacholt knows he has a chance, but he also tries not to let too many expectations show. “We’ve been sneaking around again recently, and of course you look at the table. But we won’t let ourselves be fooled, we don’t have to do anything,” Pacholt confirmed.
In Wolfsberg, Manfred Schmid’s first gift to WAC fans is obvious: there has been no home win in Lavanttal for a long time. Eight defeats, one draw and one victory were seen in mid-September last year in Wolfsburg this season. With Schmid, the turning point must come. In her first appearance under successor Robin Dutt, she was against table neighbor Lustenau.
“We want to try to bring in linear and tactical considerations,” Schmid said on Friday. “We’ll see how quickly that can be implemented.” The path is clear: if possible, two wins should be achieved in the final games of the regular season. But 40 goals in 20 innings and miserable home stats – Wolfsberger’s problem areas are obvious.
In their basement duel, the SCR Altach and SV Ried tail light are all about their long-awaited liberation. While Invertler were unable to win eight consecutive league matches, Vorarlbergers had been waiting for a seven-match sense of accomplishment. “The victory will be a great experience for our heads,” Altaş coach Miroslav Klose said before the crisis in the country.
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