Austrian Bundesliga

Photo by David Geieregger/SEPA.Media /Getty Images

Red Bull Salzburg set to play USMNT during January camp

Leave a comment

The United States men’s national team will face Red Bull Salzburg in a scrimmage during January training camp in Qatar.

The fixture is listed on the Salzburg web site.

That means, of course, that Gregg Berhalter will match wits with fellow American boss Jesse Marsch.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

Berhalter announced his roster for the break last week, with 22 MLS-based players joining three others in camp from Jan. 5-25.

Presumably, the Yanks will add a second Qatar-based match.

The camp in Qatar will be followed by a friendly against Costa Rica in California. Qatar will host the 2022 World Cup, and the USMNT begins qualifying in the Hex this Fall.

The Austrian league is on winter break, so Marsch’s men have four friendlies scheduled including the USMNT match. They’ll also face Russia’s Zenit St. Petersburg in Qatar before meeting Poland’s Gornik Zabrze and Austria’s SKU Amstetten in Europe.

Salzburg is yet to lose in league play but holds just a two-point lead over LASK. They have an Austrian Cup quarterfinal on Feb. 9 before meeting LASK on Valentine’s Day and Eintracht Frankfurt on Feb. 20 in the Europa League. That’s a huge ask of a manager.

Haland’s BVB move sends message in wide-open Bundesliga race

Haland signs with Borussia Dortmund
Photo by ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP via Getty Images
Leave a comment

Borussia Dortmund announced its capture of star teen striker Erling Braut Haland on Sunday, saying “our persistence paid off.”

BVB pipped a number of suitors, including Red Bull Salzburg’s partner club RB Leipzig, to land the heralded Norwegian striker.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ] 

The 19-year-old produced an incredible half-season for Jesse Marsch at Salzburg, notching 28 goals and seven assists in 22 matches.

Lest anyone write it off as Austrian Bundesliga success for Haland, he scored eight times in the Champions League. That includes a goal against Liverpool and three versus Napoli.

He signs a deal with BVB through 2023/24. From BVB.de/en:

“Right from the very start, I knew I wanted to move here. I can’t wait to get started and play in front of over 80,000 fans in the incredible Dortmund atmosphere. I’m so excited.”

This will likely prove at worst a temporary setback for Manchester United and Liverpool, but it’s huge for BVB. They may have a target man befitting a title fight. Leaders RB Leipzig have Timo Werner and Bayern still has Robert Lewandowski, and Haland can be the next wave. Dortmund is seven points back of the Bundesliga lead in a wide-open title fight.

Haland has the pedigree, his father 34-times capped for Norway. Alf-Inge Haland played much of his career in England with Manchester City, Leeds United, and Nottingham Forest.

The move is a shot across the bow of Salzburg, though it fits their philosophy. And according to sporting director Christoph Freund they could not have signed Haland without an out clause in his deal.

“It is incredible how well Erling developed with us and the kind of outstanding performances he has achieved together with our team,” from Salzburg’s official site. “We are proud to have been able to develop another young player to this level. Without putting an exit clause in his contract, we would not have been able to sign him for FC Red Bull Salzburg in the summer of 2018. We wish Erling all the very best for his future, which I am sure will take him to great places.

Can American coach Marsch overcome the sales of Haland and Takumi Minamino? He’ll have a month to get his squad ready for a critical and brutal three-match run.

Salzburg is yet to lose in league play but holds just a two-point lead over LASK. They have an Austrian Cup quarterfinal on Feb. 9 before meeting LASK on Valentine’s Day and Eintracht Frankfurt on Feb. 20 in the Europa League. That’s a huge ask of a manager.

It won’t hurt Marsch’s resume too much if it doesn’t go well; His star will only rise if he successfully navigates life without Minamino and Haland.

Report: Salzburg star Haland meets with Borussia Dortmund

Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images
1 Comment

Erling Braut Haland is one of the most promising young names in European football, his career trajectory shooting up, up, up after several dynamite performances in the UEFA Champions League.

The Red Bull Salzburg striker, 19, wasn’t in full fitness when his side was bounced from the UCL by Liverpool on Tuesday, but he’d made his presence felt earlier in the competition.

[ MORE: Premier League schedule ]

Haland bagged eight of his 28 season goals in the UCL, including three against Napoli and one against the reigning champion Reds.

Now the Leeds-born Norwegian is eyeing up his next step. Having been linked with Manchester United and his dad’s club Leeds, Haland reportedly flew into Dortmund for a Wednesday meeting with Borussia Dortmund.

Dad, Alf-Inge Haland, played 22 years between Bryne, Nottingham Forest, Leeds United, Manchester City, and Rosseland.

Now should Haland find a new home, it seems awfully likely it would work similar to Christian Pulisic‘s move to Chelsea from Dortmund last season; The twice-capped Norway international could sign for BVB (or another club) and head back to Salzburg to star in the Europa League (he’s cup-tied in the UCL).

Plus, Salzburg would love to give coach Jesse Marsch a full year with the star. They’re unbeaten in league play.

Marsch: ‘We will be proud eventually’ after loss to Liverpool

Photo by John Walton/PA Images via Getty Images
Leave a comment

It stings right now, but Red Bull Salzburg and its American coach can be proud of its UEFA Champions League group stage effort this season.

Jesse Marsch’s men couldn’t make some early chances work and Liverpool came to life in the second half of a 2-0 win on Tuesday in Austria, a win which pushed the reigning UCL champions into the knockout rounds and sent Salzburg into the Europa League.

[ RECAP: Salzburg 0-2 Liverpool ]

His Liverpool counterpart Jurgen Klopp offered lots of praise for Salzburg, and the Austrian club’s first half performance was good enough to threaten a lead.

Marsch was asked whether he was proud or disappointed.

“It is a bit of both,” he told ProSoccerUSA’s Manuel Veth, via Twitter. “We had that moment with Hwang and Haland and normally that is a goal. … We are disappointed but will be proud eventually.”

Marsch admitted that Haland was playing injured, and that substituting him late was a tough decision.

The American said that Salzburg can win the Europa League, so the team won’t be dropping its heads despite its lack of place in the UCL Round of 16.

Marsch has certainly exceeded expectations in his maiden voyage as Salzburg boss, drawing Napoli and twice beating Genk while providing plenty of worry to Liverpool in two losses.

He also proffered this gem below:

Marsch beams as Salzburg win sets up show-stopper v. Liverpool

Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images
Leave a comment

An American manager and his Austrian club stand between Liverpool and its defense of the UEFA Champions League crown.

Red Bull Salzburg can advance to the knockout rounds with a defeat of Liverpool in Austria on Dec. 10, one that doesn’t come with three or more goals from the Reds.

[ RECAPS: Liverpool-Napoli | Valencia-Chelsea ]

That’s because they smashed Genk 4-1 in Belgium on Wednesday. They now have 16 goals in five group stage matches, eight coming courtesy of 19-year-old Erling Braut Haland. The player is now the first teenager to score eight goals in a group stage.

Here’s Marsch, via Sky Sports Austria:

“It was perhaps our best performance of the season so far. It was clear from the beginning that we were the better team. I’m proud of the guys. Against the ball it was difficult for Genk. An important goal for us is more stability and today was a big step in the right direction.”

A place in the knockout rounds for Salzburg would be magnificent, and for Marsch to author it would be a banner American fans would be thrilled to wave in celebration.

The ex-New York Red Bulls coach is now 17W-4D-2L as Salzburg boss, the only losses coming against Napoli and Liverpool. He’s unbeaten in league play, and targeting these moments as milemarkers.

“This team needs big games. This is important for the development of the talent in this squad. We are hungry, every day. That’s a big part of our success.”