DAVID SMITH - Friday, September 19, 2014
Conor O'Brien and Wiener Neustadt will try to regroup from Wednesday's drubbing when they visit Altach while Shawn Barry and Linz will have their eye on the division's top spot when they visit Hartberg.
SCR Altach - SC Wiener Neustadt
After a blow-out midweek loss threatened the small bit of momentum Wiener Neustadt gained upon Conor O'Brien's arrival, the team will try to bounce back on Saturday when they visit SCR Altach.
Neustadt were demolished in a midweek makeup game against Rapid Vienna, allowing four second-half goals in a 5-1 loss. They had won their two prior, although with both having come before the long international break, their seeming momentum could very well have fallen victim to the layoff.
Altach have also been less than spectacular as of late, going three straight without a win including a 5-0 drubbing at the hands of Salzburg in late-August.
They have drawn against both Ried and Grödig in their last two, although the defense looked suspect at best in allowing in a combined five in the pair of outings.
Neither team is reporting any absences.
TSV Hartberg - LASK Linz
Shawn Barry and Linz will try to extend their highly impressive run in Erste Liga play on Friday when they visit last-place TSV Hartberg
Just after being promoted to the division, Linz have been a complete surprise, winning six of their first 10 games to claim second spot in the standings.
They are just two points behind leaders Liefering, although they have Friday's opponents Hartberg to thank as their surprise blow-out upset over the first-place team on Tuesday kept the gap narrow.
Linz will be careful to avoid the same fate since Hartberg, while dead last in the standings, have won their last two games, both with the defense pitching a shut-out.
For their part, Linz could only manage a draw at Kapfenberg on Tuesday, and will be looking to improve upon their other meeting with Hartberg this year, a scoreless draw in the second game of the season.
With usual starting keeper Fabian Bredlow suspended due to a red card, Keith Cardona could be included on Liefering's bench on Friday when the team tries to bounce back against FAC Team für Wien.