Austria: Turbulence at the traditional club Rapid Vienna - Sport

Should we have switched on the television on Thursday evening? FC Vaduz vs. Apollonia Limassol, Europa Conference League, the biggest game in little Liechtenstein football history ended in a 0-0. It was even more unspectacular than one could have imagined. But it might have made sense for Austrians to take a look, because of the therapeutic effect.

Because where Vaduz played, the players from Rapid Vienna should run up. In the European Cup, as a representative of a not always successful but proud football nation, which this year was once again shown how you can fail if you fall too much in love with your own past.

When the Rapidlers lost their home game against FC Vaduz on August 25th, at the time penultimate in the second Swiss football league, a group of hardcore fans entered the presidential box from the west stand in the minutes after the final whistle to give the club leaders their opinion . The chaotic scenes meant that in the days that followed, first President Martin Bruckner and later manager Christoph Peschek announced their resignations. The latter did so in tears, along with a declaration of love to the club, for which he no longer works.

Austria remains a small country with a lot of tradition

All this once again served the cliché that people in Hütteldorf like to indulge in - and that's why it does so well Austria fits because it can be applied to the entire country. Rapid has been celebrating its love of tradition and its virtues of "fighting and winning" for 123 years. The 90s charm, a mixture of beer and sweat in the nose and a belly and a gold chain in front of the eyes, is not only gladly glorified at Rapid.

The longing for a world in which Hansi Krankl scored his goals, Falco sang at the Danube Island Festival and one could peacefully fill the oil heating system in October is omnipresent in Austria, where one sometimes gets the impression that people think so much about the past that no more time for the future.

For an inside look, that's enough for satisfaction: Rapid remains Rapid, a formerly glorious club, which can simply get an old video cassette with Krankl goals from the archive if there is criticism that the work there is not up to date - you can do that Incidentally, also excellently illustrate the distance to the Red Bull soccer branch in Salzburg, which looks back rather reluctantly, but instead plays the Champions League.

Austria remains Austria, a small country with a lot of tradition, which in case of doubt can always refer to Mozart when things get stuck. You shouldn't look beyond national borders, because then you would quickly see that many traditional institutions in Austria have not managed to keep up. Anyone who would like to make this clear again is invited to therapeutic football watching next Thursday: FC Vaduz will be playing again.

This column will also appear in September 9, 2022 Austria newsletterwhich brings together SZ reporting on Austria. Register now for free.

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