Tough battle culminates in deserved win
FC Pinzgau Saalfelden 3-2 (2-1) SAK 1914.
Goals: Tandari (5, 38), Schwaighofer (51); Petrit (31), Federer (57)
Despite playing for 33 minutes with only 10 men, FC Pinzgau Saalfelden produced a real show of strength to deservedly beat SAK 1914 3-2 on Saturday evening.
The Mountainous Pine Blues made an ambitious start to their clash with SAK 1914 and set the tone from the start – something that would quickly pay off. Though visiting shot-stopper Benjamin Morawitz managed to get a hand to a long-range effort from Felix Adjei, the keeper was powerless to prevent Tamas Tandari slamming the rebound home and had to pick the ball out of his own net for the first time. Despite the heat, the Ziege crew kept the tempo up and created further chances. Joao Pedro missed a sitter from close range, before Tandari had a shot from distance saved by the keeper and Alfonso Ocampo-Chavez attempted a spectacular bicycle kick. But they were soon made to pay for their profligacy, with the men from Nonntal claiming a fortuitous leveller through Nika Petrit following a corner. The hosts remained unperturbed, however, continually posing a threat and creating moments of danger via quick attacks. Towards the end of the first half, Joao Pedro picked out his team-mate Tandari perfectly and the attacker confidently slotted home to make it 2-1 at the break.
The men from Saalfelden continued to have a good foothold in the game in the second period and extended their lead to 3-1 via a lovely counter and a well-placed shot from Jonas Schwaighofer. Referee Aufschnaiter courted controversy in the 57th minute after the ball had been smashed against Felix Adjei’s hand in the box 12 metres out. Rather than giving a penalty and a yellow card, the official opted to give the defender his marching orders – to the astonishment of all the players and spectators. Stefan Federer confidently dispatched the resultant spot-kick to reduce the deficit to 3-2. Despite being a man down, Christian Ziege’s side continued to battle doggedly and defended their slender advantage to see out a deserved victory and make it two wins from two home games.
“We had the game under control from the start and played very good football. The only reproach that I must make of my team is that we didn’t have a bigger lead and didn’t take our chances. The sending-off was questionable and impacted the second half. I’m proud of the way our players reacted to it and the resilience they showed. The victory was more than deserved and I’m glad we were rewarded for our performance today,” Christian Ziege said.
Schröcker; Kitahara, Mühlbacher, Ziege, Adjei; Schwaighofer, Joao Pedro (Rathgeb, 90+3),
Moosmann, Aydinhan (Fürstaller, 75), Ocampo-Chavez (Handlechner, 79); Tandari