The Styrians celebrated a 1-0 home win against Rapid on Saturday with a goal from Christoph Lang (6th) and thus moved up to third place LASK in fourth place in the table on points. The Hütteldorfers, on the other hand, slipped to seventh place after numerous missed opportunities and are now on course towards the qualification group eight laps before the end of the basic round.
In front of the eyes of ÖFB team boss Ralf Rangnick and over 5,000 other spectators in the Profertil Arena, which was sold out for the first time in five years, the guests found their first opportunity – Guido Burgstaller tested Hartberg goalie Raphael Sallinger with his head after a corner (5th). In return, the only goal of the evening came: Lang moved in from the right, not decisively attacked by Martin Moormann, and shot into the far corner with his left foot.
Rapid responded with the next dangerous corner, this time Sallinger was there after a volley from Roman Kerschbaum (8th). As a result, the Hütteldorfers clearly dictated the action, Hartberg’s neo-team striker Maximilian Entrup was unregistered, but the equalizer still didn’t work. Burgstaller missed the best chance before the break, his header from a cross from Nicolas Kühn ended up in the arms of Sallinger (41′).
After the break, the Viennese superiority became even more pressing. However, Zoran Barisic’s team lacked efficiency and repeatedly failed due to the strong Sallinger. The keeper parried a shot from Marco Grüll (51′) and was lucky when a lob from Burgstaller hit the outside post (51′) and Kühn shot over the goal from a few meters from a completely free position (53′).
The staccato of chances continued: Sallinger shone with a Burgstaller shot deflected by Paul Komposch (63′) and with further shots from Kühn (71′) and Burgstaller (71′ and 72′). In the end, Hartberg saved the lead with a lot of fighting spirit over time and thus took his fourth victory from the last five rounds. Rapid only managed four points from the last four league games. The first duel between the two clubs, who are now separated by seven points, resulted in a 1-0 win for Hartberg in Vienna in August.
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