Our side took a 2-0 win at Austria Vienna today, thanks to goals from Mergim Berisha and Patson Daka, to maintain their 100% record after five matches of the season.
Our side started the game with six new players as it became clear we were going to have to play a waiting game. While the difference in strength between the two teams could be seen with their opposite approaches, the scoreboard did not reflect it. The hosts sat back and allowed Andre Ramalho & Co to dominate the play, even if we were unable to turn this into much attacking danger.
It wasn't until the 16th minute before Mergim Berisha had our first shot, before Rasmus Kristensen tested Austria goalie Pentz moments later (17'). The Dane kept on spearheading our attacking down the flank, along with his counterpart on the left side of the pitch, Patrick Farkas – but nothing came of the many balls they put into the box. Dominik Szoboszlai (26') and Mergim Berisha (34') both had shots from distance, meanwhile. We also had a bit of fortune at the other end on a rare Austria Vienna attack, when Pichler was unable to convert a misplaced Kristensen clearance despite being in a promising position (33').
The second half was definitely more eventful. Austria tried to get more of the play, which gave them a few moments going forward and also left us more space to play in. Our side had our best chance of the match so far after 52 minutes via Mergim Berisha, who turned and forced Pentz into a stunning save. The tempo of the match was now higher as the chances continued to come - and we got our reward.
After Jerome Onguene had a goal disallowed for offside (61'), Mergim Berisha put the ball in the net two minutes later (63'). A wonderful cross from Dominik Szoboszlai allowed him to head in for 1-0, before substitute Patson Daka almost made it 2-0 (67'). The flag of the assistant referee denied the goal again, keeping things very interesting heading into the final phase with our side looking determined to take the points. Jesse Marsch brought on his new signing Oumar Solet in the final minutes for his Austrian Bundesliga debut, in order to offer more defensive solidity. Patson Daka then sealed the victory in stoppage time by turning in after Enock Mwepu hit the post (90+1').
Austria Vienna were very solid, they had a good strategy. In the second half, the match was more open and we had more of a punch. On the whole, I am very proud. We changed a lot of players today but still succeeded by playing our football. It's about finding a good balance. I like rotating and giving a lot of players a chance.
It wasn't easy today, but we were able to increasingly bring in the things we do well to the game. I'm pleased to have scored, of course, and to be able to help the team a bit today.
Ulmer for Farkas (63'), Okugawa for Szoboszlai (63'), Daka for Berisha (63'), Mwepu for Camara (73'), Solet for Koita (83')
Farkas (38' unsporting behaviour), Okafor (45+1' foul)
not available for action
Bernede (broken shin)