SC Austria Lustenau 2-3 RZ Pellets WAC
Lustenau scored their first league goals since September, but they came out on the wrong side of a high-scoring contest against Wolfsberg on Saturday.
Augustine Boakye slammed in his fifth goal of the season with a lovely low strike into the bottom corner - his first from outside the area - to give WAC an early lead, but despite dominating the first half, it would take the guests until after the hour mark for Thierno Ballo’s spot kick to double the lead following a handball in the box.
The home side had gone six games without a goal, but they suddenly launched a fightback which began with a tremendous turn in the area from Namory Cisse, before he thundered a shot into the top corner. In the pouring rain, Lustenau kept up the pressure for an equaliser, but that was undone with a soft giveaway at the back which opened the door for Ballo to complete his second brace of the season and put WAC 3-1 up late on. There was still time for Yadaly Diaby to curl in a precise finish from long range, reducing the deficit to just one goal, but Lustenau slipped to a third successive defeat as Wolfsberg snuck into the top six of the table.
TSG Egger Glas Hartberg 1-0 SK Rapid
A remarkable 12 saves from Hartberg keeper Raphael Sallinger somehow kept Rapid at bay, as the hosts won again to continue their stunning start to the season.
Hartberg’s Christoph Lang crashed in a brilliant left-footed strike just inside the far post after six minutes at the Profertil Arena, meaning he’s now been directly involved in a goal for five games on the bounce. What followed was a display of great goalkeeping to hold onto the lead. Rapid enjoyed several spells of pressure, as Guido Burgstaller recorded a massive seven shots all by himself, but each time he was thwarted by Sallinger, and once he’d beaten the keeper with a cool chipped finish, the woodwork was there to deny him.
Marco Grüll also set up no fewer than seven shots for his teammates, and the best chances fell to Nicolas Kühn, who sent a half-volley just over the top and fired a loose ball straight at the keeper from a good position in the box. Hartberg threatened to add to their lead a few times on the counter, but this season’s scoring sensation Maximilian Entrup couldn’t quite reach a cross, and also hit the side-netting from a tight angle under the watchful eye of national team boss Ralf Rangnick, who just awarded him a first call-up. Ultimately, Rapid’s 23 shots came to nothing as they slipped down to eighth in the table, for Hartberg, win number seven of the season cemented their impressive fourth place.
WSG Tirol 5-1 CASHPOINT SCR Altach
An uncharacteristically sloppy defensive performance from Altach helped WSG on their way to an emphatic first home win of the campaign.
WSG came in off the back of a six-game losing streak having failed to score in five, but the negative streak was ended when Nik Prelec’s lob was blocked on the line, but sat up kindly for Julius Ertlthaler to bundle home thanks to a defensive mix-up. Lukas Gugganig then skimmed a header into his own net, and Stefan Skrbo’s low cross slipped past Christian Gebauer, allowing Prelec to rifle home a simple third from close range on the stroke of half time.
Things went from bad to worse for Altach when Prelec then turned provider for Skrbo to make it 4-0 as he grabbed a goal and an assist on his starting debut, before Gustavo Santos struck a sweet curling shot past the WSG keeper and in at the far post to at least get the guests on the board - also snapping their run of five league games without scoring. The home team had the final say though as Sandi Ogrinec slotted in for 5-1 to confirm a precious second win of the season for WSG, Altach are now five points and one place above them, in tenth.
SK Austria Klagenfurt 0-3 SK Puntigamer Sturm Graz
Sturm got back to winning ways in style with a comfortable victory on the road in Klagenfurt on Sunday.
Having found themselves in the unfamiliar position of losing two league games in a row, the guests started strongly in Carinthia, as an early delivery into the box was well-parried by keeper Phillip Menzel, only for Jon Gorenc-Stankovic to rush in on the rebound and head Sturm into a third-minute lead. A quarter of an hour later, Tomi Horvat doubled the advantage with a snapshot from outside the box which arrowed low into the corner of the Klagenfurt goal, and with the hosts turning in a lacklustre display, Sturm didn’t have too much defensive work to do before Horvat found the net again after the break.
David Schnegg claimed a career ninth Bundesliga assist as he got free on the left and cut back for Horvat to sweep home from inside the box on 67 minutes, notching his first Bundesliga brace, and securing all three points in the process. Klagenfurt themselves have now lost two successive league games but they remain fifth, as Sturm moved level on points with Salzburg at the top of the table.
FC Blau-Weiß Linz 2-0 LASK
Blau-Weiß produced an excellent display to take the Linzer Derby bragging rights in the second meeting of the season against city rivals LASK.
Having won the previous derby 2-0 in August, the guests started the brighter of the two teams on Sunday, but after ten minutes of pressure which led to few openings, it was Blau-Weiß who took the game by the scruff of the neck. Ronivaldo tested keeper Tobias Lawal from way out, before the LASK stopper had to react well to save from a corner and then a free kick. Just before the half-hour mark though, Alexander Briedl got his first Bundesliga assist, as his cross made its way through to Ronivaldo in the area, and the striker fired home clinically to give the home fans more than just faint hopes of a win.
The visitors came back stronger, but despite them having more shots and more possession, Blau-Weiß keeper Nicolas Schmid was never really kept too busy, and when substitute Stefan Feiertag picked out the top corner of the LASK goal with a late rocket, his first Bundesliga strike put his side in a comfortable position for the final ten minutes. The hosts were left to celebrate a crucial derby win at their new stadium, and the three points left them in ninth, with LASK failing to make ground on the two sides above them in the table.
FK Austria Vienna 0-0 FC Red Bull Salzburg
An Alexander Schlager masterclass helped his team to a point on the road in Favoriten, preserving Salzburg’s long unbeaten run against Austria Vienna in the process.
In the last 17 league meetings between the pair Salzburg had not tasted defeat, but Austria Vienna were close to the win in this enthralling yet goalless game, and they bossed the first half as Andreas Gruber got started with his six shots, forcing Schlager into a stunning reflex stop from a flick-on header after 32 minutes.
Forson Amankwah misjudged one headed chance for the visitors, but after the break it was again the Violets who took up the mantle, with Fisnik Asllani testing Schlager with a dipping effort towards the top corner, and Aleksandar Jukic firing only onto the top of the crossbar from the left. The drama escalated in the closing stages, as Austria Vienna won a 90th minute penalty; Marvin Martins was sent off for his conduct in the aftermath of being awarded said spot kick, and Alexander Schmidt was ultimately denied from the spot by Schlager, who sprang to his right to make the crucial late save. Salzburg therefore preserved their unbeaten away record in the Bundesliga, pushing that to 23 games to match Wacker Innsbruck’s figure from 1990, whilst Austria Vienna at least preserved their own defensive hot-streak, as they made it six league games without conceding, something they haven’t managed since 2006. Austria stay seventh in the table and one point outside the top six, whilst Salzburg are in first, level on 30 points with Sturm.
Redakteur: The Other Bundesliga
Fotos: GEPA pictures