World Cup qualifiers - ÖFB women search for the missing percentage

There is bad news and a little bit of good news in domestic football: if the men do not guarantee it, then at least the women, who started to qualify with an 8-1 win over Latvia and also in the second match against Macedonia on Tuesday (6pm / ORF Sport +) Clear filters in Scooby.

The match against Latvia, which ultimately resulted in a clear opening win and smiling faces for the Austrians, wasn’t the walk it might seem after looking at the score, but it brought important insights to team boss Irene Fuhrmann: also after a difficult start. The team can find their way back to their safety thanks to the routine they have developed over the past few years. The team is now so broad that even the bench players can always bring a breath of fresh air, and the youth integration is ahead, which opens up other horizons for the future, also with the Under-19 team, who narrowly defeated Italy 3:4 in Sunday’s friendly.

However, Foreman hopes for an increase. Coordination issues, such as the one that led to goal-scoring between goalkeeper Manuela Zinsberger and the defence, should be avoided as much as possible against stronger opponents – particularly with regard to upcoming matches against the favorites from England. The team boss summed up: “We made life difficult for ourselves by making a mistake in the passport.” “We are not one hundred percent satisfied.”

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“Unpleasant to play on”

The search for the missing percentage is now continuing against North Macedonia; The team that, according to the latest duels, which Austria won 3-0, and the world rankings, must clearly defeat it.

As number 21, the participants from Austria are clearly ahead of the Macedonians, who are only ranked 131st and who rose to the level of their role as the raven in the 8-0 win over England at the start. However, Foreman warns: “We know how uncomfortable the team is to play. They fight tough duels and love to play to get time to break our rhythm. We have to be patient and determined.”

The ÖFB will once again be led by Sarah Bontegam, who replaced Nina Berger as the international record (for women and men) with her 110th international on Friday, and striker Nicole Bella, who also achieved a personal achievement.

After the double, Bella has 31 goals in the national team, replacing the previous runner-up, Gertrude Stalinger. Burger is still out of reach with 53 goals at the moment if Bella comes close to her against North Macedonia, but she probably won’t mind.

For Fuhrmann, this would not only be a fitting gift on her 41st birthday, but also other good news. With this one can look somewhat comfortable in the future of red-white-red women’s football.


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