Austria confirm they WILL travel to Scotland for World Cup qualifier next week despite Covid-19 travel restrictions ruling out ALL their German-based players… with 16 of their last squad from the Bundesliga
- Austria will face Scotland later this month without their Germany-based stars
- Players must isolate for 14 days after being in the UK
- Stars from the Bundesliga made up 16 of Austria’s last international squad
- Steve Clarke’s Scotland welcome Austria for a World Cup qualifier on March 25
Austria will travel to Scotland for their World Cup qualifier later this month without any of their German-based players due to coronavirus quarantine restrictions.
Current regulations say nobody can travel between UK and Germany without a 14-day quarantine period on their return, which caused Austria to look into several options, including playing the match in a neutral country.
Players from the Bundesliga took up 16 places in Austria’s last international squad, including Bayern Munich star David Alaba, but none of them will be picked for the match at Hampden Park on March 25.
Austria will be without all of their German-based players, including Bayern Munich’s David Alaba, for their World Cup qualifier with Scotland on March 25
Austrian head to Hampden Park for a World Cup qualifier with Steve Clarke’s side on March 25
Government rules have led to several Champions League fixtures involving English and German clubs, including RB Leipzig’s clash with Liverpool and Manchester City’s tie with Borussia Monchengladbach, be moved to neutral venues.
The Austrian FA claimed FIFA, UEFA and the Scottish FA insisted on Steve Clarke’s side having home advantage at some point, meaning there was a choice between swapping the home and away fixtures around or not using any German-based payers this month.
Managing director Bernhard Neuhold described this as ‘two unsatisfactory options’ but the country ‘weighed up all the parameters’ and made a choice influenced by the desire not to play three away World Cup qualifiers in quick succession in the autumn.
Austria boss Franco Foda claimed: ‘There was no satisfactory option in this situation. We made our decision with a view to the entire qualification campaign.
Manager Franco Foda said Austria refused to swap around the home and away fixtures
‘If we had swapped the home rights, we would have had to play three logistically challenging and gruelling away games in Moldova, Israel and Scotland in September.
‘We are also hoping for a real home advantage with our fans behind us in autumn. It is important for us that the decision has been made. Now it’s time to focus on the things that we can influence.’
The decision means Austria will be without Bayern defender Alaba for the Scotland tie, as well as RB Leipzig midfielder Marcel Sabitzer and national team captain Julian Baumgartlinger, who plays for Bayer Leverkusen.
After playing Scotland at Hampden Park, Austria face homes qualifiers against the Faroe Islands on March 28 and Denmark on March 31. It is expected the German-based players will be available for those matches.
Scotland, meanwhile, travel to Israel on March 28 before hosting the Faroe Islands in Glasgow again on March 31.
GERMAN-BASED PLAYERS IN LAST AUSTRIA INTERNATIONAL SQUAD
Aleksandar Dragovic (Bayer Leverkusen)
Christoph Baumgartner (Hoffenheim)
Christopher Trimmel (Union Berlin)
David Alaba (Bayern Munich)
Julian Baumgartlinger (captain – Bayer Leverkusen)
Karim Onisiwo (FC Mainz)
Marcel Sabitzer (RB Leipzig)
Martin Hinteregger (Eintracht Frankfurt)
Michael Gregoritsch (Augsburg)
Pavao Pervan (Wolfsburg)
Philipp Lienhart (Freiburg)
Sasa Kalajdzic (VfB Stuttgart)
Stefan Ilsanker (Frankfurt)
Stefan Lainer (Borussia Monchengladbach)
Valentino Lazaro (Borussia Monchengladbach)
Xaver Schlager (Wolfsburg)