Preview: Austria vs Scotland – prediction, team news, lineups, where to watch
Separated by just one point in Group F of the 2022 European World Cup Qualification, both Austria and Scotland will seek a vital victory on Tuesday, when they meet in Vienna.
As the Tartan Army edged out Moldova at Hampden Park over the weekend, the hosts found themselves on the wrong side of a hideout from the two nations’ main playoff rivals, Israel.
Scotland immediately bounced back from their midweek loss to Denmark with a close win over Group F minnows Moldova on Saturday as they continued their quest for a return to the world stage after two decades away.
Giving up to the Danes twice in the first 15 minutes of this latest international triple header had put Steve Clarke’s ailing team on their heels, and they were unable to respond, resulting in their first defeat of the qualifying process. However, the weekend’s victory lifts them to third place in the standings and into contention to finish behind group leaders Denmark.
However, having achieved just two victories in his last seven outings, a tricky trip to the Austrian capital will test Scotland’s capabilities to the fullest, after passing a tougher test than they expected against the Moldovans under a Lyndon. Dykes well worked. objective.
That success puts the Tartan Army seven points so far, one ahead of Austria, but behind Israel by two, as they only drew their first two matches last March.
After scoring maximum points in Hampden against a team ranked 126 places below them in the world rankings, ensuring they hold an unbeaten record in their last nine World Cup qualifying matches at home, Scotland now faces a more difficult task on Tuesday night.
The last time Scotland reached a World Cup, in 1998, they won seven times en route to the final in France, so Clarke will be aware of the need to fight for victory against a reeling Austrian team.
Three fewer goals before the break-in Haifa, head coach Franco Foda found himself with a huge rebuilding job to do if his Austrian team wanted to return to contention against Israel, but even goals from Christoph Baumgartner and Marko Arnautovic to both sides of the break couldn’t help but turn things around.
A crushing 5-2 loss causes Foda’s men to lose a beat in the playoff race as they now lag behind in fourth place ahead of their third qualifying game in a week.
Having made it out of the group stage of Euro 2020, the first time they’ve made it to a major tournament since the 1982 World Cup, they have ambitions to make it to the main event next year, but, like Scotland, they don’t know. have classified since 1998.
Indeed, Das Team immediately recovered from the disappointment of leaving the European Championship against eventual champion Italy with a 2-0 win over Moldova in Chisinau following their return to competitive action, goals from both Baumgartner and Arnautovic sealing the deal.
However, Saturday’s setback leaves them in a precarious position and in need of obtaining maximum points against a team that kept them in Glasgow on the opening day of the campaign: a 2-2 draw, in which they were rejected. for John McGinn’s late goal.
Austria possible starting lineup:
Bachmann; Lainer, Lienhart, Hinteregger, Ulmer; Alaba, Grillitsch, Laimer; Baumgartner, Gregoritsch, Arnautovic
Scotland possible starting lineup:
Gordon; Hendry, Hanley, Tierney; Patterson, McGregor, Gilmour, McGinn, Robertson; Dykes, Adams
We say: Austria 2-1 Scotland
Scotland, who have never been the most prolific of scorers, have been lacking in ideas and some composure during their first two matches of this international period, so they could be outmatched by an Austrian team that, despite injuries, he has several credible options in attack.
Therefore, the home team is keen to walk away from their counterparts in the race for a place in the top two, leaving the Scots in danger of being left behind if Israel also wins again.