Christian Ilzer had to do without Dominik Fitz, Dominik Prokop took his position. Erik Palmer-Brown replaced Michael Madl in the defence, Stephan Zwierschitz started instead of Christoph Martschinko. Otherwise, the team remained unchanged after the 2-0 victory against Admira, including Benedikt Pichler.
SKN was able to reach draws in all previous games against Austria Wien during the past season. Coach Robert Ibertsberger made four changes to his starting line-up: Martin Rasner, Michael Ambichl, Daniel Schütz and Nicolas Meister were given a chance from the start.
With temperatures above 30°C in Vienna, the guests from St. Pölten had the first chance of the game, Patrick Pentz saved against Cory Burke (4’). Dominik Prokop shot a free kick from a great distance; the ball missed the goal (12’). Austria Wien took the lead in the 18th minute after a nice combination by Christoph Monschein and Manprit Sarkaria. Benedikt Pichler scored the 1-0.
St. Pölten had an opportunity to equalize after 27 minutes, a header by Daniel Schütz after a cross by Martin Rasner narrowly missed the far post. Christoph Monschein appeared in front of Christoph Riegler, SKN’s goalkeeper remained the winner (30’). Suddenly the 1-1 fell, Robert Ljubicic escaped the violet back team and scored over Patrick Pentz - nice goal, unfortunately on the wrong side (32’).
But Austria Wien’s lead was quickly restored. Christoph Monschein copied his opponent, our goal getter also scored with a lob - 2-1 in the 36th minute. St. Pölten equalized again before the break, Daniel Schütz scored after a cross by Kofi Schulz – 2-2 (44’).
Manprit Sarkaria came back strong, his shot after a solo across half of the field was fished out of the corner by Riegler (49’). A dangerous cross from Alexander Grünwald was defused by St. Pölten’s defence, on the other side a shot by Cory Burke went over the crossbar (54’). Patrick Pentz (56’) parried a free kick by Michael Ambichl.
In the 58th minute, Robert Ibertsberger brought George Davies, which should quickly pay off for the former FAK coach: The striker from Sierra Leone scored twice in the 60th and 63rd minute and was able to turn the game.
Patrick Wimmer, Vesel Demaku, Maximilian Sax, Bright Edomwonyi and Michael Madl came into the game during the second half, Christian Ilzer motivated his team to attack again during a short break. Bright Edomwonyi was denied a penalty after a foul by Riegler (72’), Vesel Demaku missed (76’). Unfortunately, the next substitute scored on the other side, Alan scored the 2-5 in the 83rd minute. Austria Wien’s challenge in Altach on Tuesday is to defend the championship lead in the qualification group of the tipico Bundesliga.
Austria Wien: Pentz; Klein (79’ Madl), Palmer-Brown, Borković, Zwierschitz; Jeggo; Sarkaria (61’ Wimmer), Prokop (61’ Demaku), Grünwald (70’ Sax), Pichler; Monschein (70’ Edomwonyi)
St. Pölten: Riegler; Klarer, Luan, Muhamedbegovic; Rasner (81’ Messerer), Ambichl (58’ Davies), Ljubicic, Schulz; Schütz (74’ Alan), Burke, Meister (81’ Ouedraogo)
Goals: Pichler (18’), Monschein (36’); Ljubicic (32’), Schütz (44’), Davies (60’, 63’), Alan (83’)
Yellow cards: Prokop (48’); Luan (86’)
Generali-Arena, referee Alexander Harkam, no spectators allowed