Austria vs Turkey: Team News, Lineups and Predictions
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Austria vs Turkey: Team News, Lineups and Predictions

02/07/24 10:02

Vincenzo Montella’s dangerous Turkey side faces an uphill battle as they play surprise group winners Austria in the last of the round of 16 fixtures later today in Leipzig.

Austria, given the label of “potential dark horses” before the tournament kicked off, beat France, the Netherlands and Poland to the top spot in group D, and have scored three goals in both of their last two games, beating Poland and the Dutch.

Former Manchester United manager Ralf Rangnick has led his nation to the knockout stages for only the second time in their history, and implementing a high-tempo, high press, all action style, he will see this as the perfect opportunity for Austria to reach the quarter finals of the Euros for the first time ever.

Turkey, who played well in the group stages, also picked up two wins and finished second in their group behind Portugal. But they were handed a major blow in what was a hotly contested, poorly disciplined 2-1 win against Czechia, in which captain and midfield maestro Hakan Calhanoglu and center back Samet Akaydin both picked up cards which suspended them for their round of 16 clash.

Having failed to reach the knockout stages of the Euros since their magical run to the semi-finals in 2008, their draw has been relatively kind, avoiding a dangerous side of the bracket that includes Germany, Spain and France, but with two key players missing, a weakened side could struggle against the relentless Austrians.

Austria are also missing young winger Patrick Wimmer through suspension after he picked up a yellow against the Netherlands, but have plenty of squad depth to cover in his absence.

Both teams remain injury free, and both will fight tooth and nail for a quarter final spot where they will play the winner of the early kick off between the Netherlands and Romania.

Austria vs Turkey key-facts

Austria form (most recent on the right): WDLWW

Turkey form: DLWLW

Where: The Leipzig Arena, Leipzig, 8pm BST.

Where can I watch: ITV1, ITV X.

Austria vs Turkey Predicted lineups:

Austria: Pentz (GK), Posch, Danso, Leinhart, Mwene, Seiwald, Laimer, Schmid, Baumgartner, Sabitzer, Arnautovic.

Turkey: Gunok (GK), Muldur, Bardakci, Demiral, Kadioglu, Yuksek, Ozcan, Guler, Yilmaz, Yildiz, Tosun.

Austria vs Turkey Prediction

During Football Park’s exclusive interview with Colin Kazim-Richards, who was part of the squad that reached the Euro 2008 semi finals, he said that the Turkey national team “go into every game wanting to win. They go in with that mindset, because that is what being Turkish means. We’re very proud.”

I’m not necessarily saying that Turkey will repeat their miraculous escape act of the 2008 quarter final where they scored with the last kick of extra time to force Croatia penalties, a shootout which they eventually won. But the belief, desire, and most importantly pride of the Turkish team will certainly be a factor during this game, and they will not give Austria an easy time of things.

But Austria were mightily impressive in the group stage, and have been since Rangnick took over. They have taken to the coaches vision like ducks to water, and I can’t see them failing at this particular hurdle. It’s also worth noting that the two sides played each other in March, and Austria obliterated Turkey to win 6-1.

This could be seen as precedent, but while I can see Austria winning the game, it will surely be a lot closer than that.

Prediction: Austria 2-1 Turkey.

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Harry Pascoe

Football Writer

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