REED. In the 43rd minute of the test match dress rehearsal of Bundesliga soccer club SV Guntamatic Ried against second division St. Pölten (2: 2) in the Josko Arena on Saturday it was suddenly dead quiet. Only the screams of Samuel Sahin-Radlinger could be heard. Visiting striker Kevin Monzialo fell unhappily on the knee of the 30-year-old Ried goalkeeper after a duel. According to the initial diagnosis, the cruciate ligament is not torn, but the meniscus and inner ligament are injured. A precise finding should bring clarity today. A week-long failure is inevitable. “In our situation, a longer absence from Sami would be a disaster,” complains Ried coach Christian Heinle.
“We explore what solutions are available”
Sahin-Radlinger captured a few points this season. The absence puts Ried under pressure: On Saturday, the compulsory game begins in the ÖFB Cup quarter-finals at the Wiener Sport-Club, and the transfer window closes on the following Monday. Ried will have to step up: It would be negligent to go into a decisive spring with only substitute Jonas Wendlinger, who has only been in goal in two ÖFB Cup games so far. “We are currently exploring what solutions there are. In principle, we are planning with Samuel beyond the summer,” says sports director Thomas Reicheltshammer, addressing a possible extension of Ried’s number one contract, which expires in the summer. It’s not the only construction site in Ried’s team: With Marcel Ziegl, the captain is also struggling with knee problems again. A recent MR examination should bring light into the darkness.
Heinle’s appearance in the first test match on Saturday against Vorwarts Steyr (3:2) also gave Heinle a headache. “I wasn’t happy at all with the first half. It was wild at times.” He also saw potential for improvement during the second test canter against St. Pölten: “We lacked the structure in the pressing.” The game itself was at times a reflection of the fall season. “We played well and then out of nowhere we were 2-0 down. We were very dominant in the second half and should have won.”
The club keeps its eyes open even after reinforcements on the offensive. A recently rumored return of Ante Bajic from Rapid is not possible: “There’s nothing to it,” says sports director Wolfgang Fiala.