Kick-off: Friday, October 6 @7:45 PM GMT
Venue: Ernst-Happel-Stadion (Wien)
Head to head record
Serbia vs Austria 3-2 (2018 World Cup qualifiers)
Serbia vs Austria 1-0 (2010 World Cup qualifiers)
Austria vs Serbia 1-3 (2010 World Cup qualifiers)
Austria vs Serbia prediction
Serbia will be looking to secure automatic qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals with a win over Austria at Ernst Happel Stadion. The Eagles have been producing terrific displays in their qualifying group, but they need to cross one hurdle more if they are to make it to the major tournament for the first time ever.
Little to play for
Austria did well to qualify for the 2016 European Championship in France, but they have slim chances of booking their place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals. Das Team sit in fourth place in Group D ahead of the visit of Serbia and they are five points behind the play-offs places with two matches to go. The Austrians are on a three-game winless run in their qualifying group and they failed to impress in a 1-1 draw with Georgia in their last home match in the process. Seeing that key player David Alaba misses the match with an injury, I do not believe that there is a big value in betting on the hosts. In Alaba’s absence, a man to watch in the home team will be Marko Arnautovic, the striker of Serbian descent.
David Alaba has joined the likes of Marcel Sabitzer and Martin Harnik in the recovery room, but coach Marcel Koller has no other selection worries ahead of Friday’s qualifier. Marc Janko is likely to be recalled to the starting line-up.
First match ball
Serbia failed to impress in the Euro 2016 qualifiers, but the Eagles have been producing splendid showings ever since Slavoljub Muslin took over the reins. Serbia’s attacking style of play is proving fruitful and the Eagles sit in the top position in Group D ahead of the trip to Wien. Slavoljub Muslin’s charges proved their worth in a hard-fought 1-0 win over the Republic of Ireland in Dublin and they are two points away from booking their place at the next year’s showpiece tournament in Russia. Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic is undisputedly the team’s key player and all eyes will be on him when Austria and Serbia face each other at Ernst-Happel-Stadion on Friday evening. A win over Marcel Koller’s men would see the Serbs secure automatic qualification for the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals and there is every chance the visitors will adopt an attack-minded approach in Friday’s showdown. Newcastle United attacker Aleksandar Mitrovic is widely expected to lead the line for the visitors against Austria.
The likes of Jagos Vukovic, Nikola Maksimovic and Uros Spajic are all sidelined with an injury, whilst Hamburg winger Filip Kostic has recovered in time to face Austria.
- Serbia could qualify for the major tournament for the first time ever
- Austria recorded only one win in previous seven qualifying matches
- Eagles are after their fourth clean sheet of the process
- Dusan Tadic scored the winner for Serbia in a 3-2 triumph over Austria in Belgrade
- Under 2.5 goals were scored in each of Austria’s last seven games
Austria vs Serbia betting pick
Austria have little to play for in Friday’s clash against Serbia and seeing that they will be without Bayern Munich superstar David Alaba in their penultimate group game, I am tempted to put my money on the Serbs, who are brimming with confidence following the victory over Ireland. There will be a number of Serbia supporters at Ernst-Happel-Stadium and, taking everything into account, away win should be considered.
Pick: Serbia to win