Written by Alex Kay
The former Austro-Hungarian empire went head to head at Euro 2016 to start Group F before giants Portugal kick a ball. The Austrian’s were favourite in this historic clash, and so had the chance to lead the group, to which they made a bright start. Within the first minute, Austria superstar David Alaba hit the post with a speculative effort from about 25 yards. Despite both teams probing for the opener, neither sets of players were able to carve open even a clear cut chance let alone a goal, meaning it was 0-0 at the break. Both teams kept cracking on in the second half, looking to be to no prevail until Hungary managed to create a two-on-two situation with some neat play and Szalai managed to break a 41 game without scoring streak. Austria then tried to hit back immediately with a scramble on the edge of the box, and things turned for the worst. When challenging for a ball, Dragovic picked up a second yellow card and was off. Austria up against it it seemed. Into the last 5 minutes and Austria were pushing all men forward, and inevitably Hungary scored a break away goal. Zoltan Stieber was played one-on-one and neatly chipped the ball into the back of the Austria net, 2-0, game over!
Robert Almer 5/10
Almer didn’t have an awful game, not a lot he could have done about both goals as was left with not much help by his defenders. Both chances were clear cut and he was left standing both times, unfortunate in that regard. But it was his distribution that let him down, especially in the second half. When you’re chasing a game the last thing you need is your keeper putting you under pressure or even worse, giving the ball away which he did especially in the second half.
Florian Klein 6/10
Klein had a decent enough game, got forward and was good on the ball. He got caught out a few time down the wing but the right flank wasn’t where the problems came from. He was solid enough in this game, but wasn’t anything special and didn’t really stand out which could be a good thing in this kind of game.
Aleksander Dragovic 5/10
The experienced centre half has had one to forget here. Wasn’t having a particularly noticeable game, not putting a foot too wrong until he was involved in an attacking scramble where the ball ended up in the back of the net. Unfortunately, the referee had blown his whistle after Dragovic had eagerly jumped in on a Hungary player, receiving a second yellow card and an early bath!
Martin Hinteregger 6/10
Had a shaky, but not a bad game. Looked decent defender but didn’t help massively for the first and second goal, too easily exploited however wasn’t helped by his other defenders around him and had been thrown up top in a desperate attempt to score an equaliser late on in the game. Was unlucky not to score when he put the ball in the back of the net and the whistle had gone.
Christrian Fuchs 5/10
The captain had a disappointing game. Not only was he easily exposed for his lack of pace but didn’t have his same usual influence going forward. The Hungarians were able to attack down their right wing after Fuchs had bombed forward which caused the Austrian defence problems all game. A day to forget!
Julian Baumgartlinger 7/10
The midfielder had a good game and was perhaps unfortunate to be on the losing team. His link up play was good string passes along from front to back and vice versa. His energies were invaluable in the team and allowed Alaba to attack and create chances for the team. However, he sometimes got overrun in the second half but this was after they were throwing everything forward in order to score.
David Alaba 8/10
Most of the game he looked the bets player on the pitch, perhaps as you’d expect though. The Munich man controlled the tempo at times and always looked a threat, even when shooting from 30 yards. Another one who was maybe unlucky to lose but sometimes individuals are not enough at international level.
Martin Harnik 5/10
Had a poor game by his standards. Always promises to threat but today really struggled to get himself involved in the game. Found himself isolated at times and unable to force his way into proceedings meaning he was really uninspiring, summing up the Austria strik force in many ways.
Zlatko Junuzovic 5/10
Another one who promises much but failed to live up to expectations. early on was picked out and hacked down because of his quick feet but after that he was unable to influence proceedings. After that he couldn’t live up to the same heights we’d come to expect form the Bundesliga man, a real nothing game for him.
Marko Arnautovic 6/10
Had an okay game, good at times and and out of the game at times. The Stoke man had a cracking season in England, but failed to translate that form into the opening game. At times he looked a threat, an accomplished player but not often enough and ended up frustrated as most Austrian’s were. Had he got on the ball more the situation would have been different but generally a bad day at the office.
Marc Janko 6/10
As the forwards in a one striker system you cannot afford to go missing as often as Janko did today. Despite all that play Austria had they produced nothing for him, and he struggled to get on the ball at the best of times let alone take any chances. Disappointing to say the least ad he will be hoping for better next time out.
Featured image:Nazionale Calcio