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Soccer-Austria coach reassures fans his side will be ready for Euros

Soccer-Austria coach reassures fans his side will be ready for Euros

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Euro 2020 - Austria Training - Bad Tatzmannsdorf, Austria - May 28, 2021 Austria coach Franco Foda during training REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

VIENNA: Austria coach Franco Foda has reassured supporters his team will be ready for their Euro 2020 opener against North Macedonia after a disappointing 0-0 home draw with Slovakia in their final warm-up match on Sunday.

The result means Austria have won one of their last six games - a 3-1 win over Faroe Islands in March - and have not scored for over 300 minutes, leaving fans unconvinced of their chances in Group C where they also face Netherlands and Ukraine.

Austria, who finished bottom of their group at Euro 2016, meet North Macedonia in Bucharest on Sunday – enough time to be properly prepared and raring to go, according to Foda.

"Our mood will rise day by day and we will be ready for the duel with North Macedonia,  I am convinced of that," he told reporters.

Foda felt they had been unlucky not to have ended their goal drought in Sunday’s clash as both Florian Grillitsch and Marko Arnautovic struck the woodwork.

“We had a lot of chances, but our opponents also had three very good opportunities. We didn't attack the last line well. Often the last pass did not work out or we were too indecisive about shooting."

Foda said he expected North Macedonia to be defensive and look to play on the counter attack.

“That's why we have to be more clinical while ensuring our defence is secure.

"We have to minimise mistakes, develop and utilise as many chances as possible against a compact team like North Macedonia."

Foda said he still had to decide on “two or three positions” for Sunday’s game and gave nothing away about where he will play talisman David Alaba.

The new Real Madrid signing has been mostly deployed on the wing by Austria but played in midfield on Sunday. “He can be used anywhere and always performs well,” said Foda.

(Writing by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Ken Ferris)

Source: Reuters

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