Our football match prediction:
A place in the last 32 of the Europa League will be at stake when Austria Wien and AEK Athens face each other at Ernst-Happel-Stadion on Thursday evening. The Violets aim to bounce back from a heavy 5-1 loss to Milan and a win over AEK will see them advance to the knockout stages of the European competition. Thorsten Fink’s men, though, have been struggling at the back in the group stages of the Europa League this term and it has to be noted that they have already conceded 16 goals in the process. The Enosis, on the other hand, are one point away from booking their spot in the next round and we predict they will adopt a defence-minded approach in Thursday’s football match against the Austrian side. AEK are more of a team than Austria and there is every chance the visitors will extend their unbeaten run in the Europa League to six games.
Highlighted Player (Raphael Holzhauser):
After spending his youth career at the likes of ATSV Teesdorf, Rapid Wien and VfB Stuttgart, Raphael Holzhauser started playing for the reserve team of Stuttgart at senior level. The 193-cm tall midfielder scored 11 goals in 77 appearances for the team and he played 23 games for the first team of Stuttgart as well. The Austria international was loaned to Augsburg in 2013, but he made no more than 13 appearances for the Bundesliga side in the 2013/2014 season. In the winter of 2015 Raphael Holzhauser returned to his homeland, signing a contract with Austria Wien. The left-footed midfielder has been playing for the capital club ever since and it has to be noted that he scored 8 goals in 35 appearances for the VIolets in the 2016/2017 Austrian Bundesliga campaign, while providing ten assists for his teammates. Raphael Holzhauser has a contract with Austria Wien which should expire on June 30, 2018. His main position is central midfield.
Highlighted Team (AEK Athens):
Established in 1924, AEK Athens are one of a number of Greek clubs based in Athens. The Enosis (Union) are well known for their passionate fans and Original 21 are considered the club’s main supporters’ group. AEK Athens play their home games in black shirts with yellow stripes and black shorts, while they often wear gray jerseys and yellow shorts when facing their rivals on the road. Olympic Stadium in Athens is the club’s home ground and the venue can hold up to 69.618 people. AEK share rivalries with fellow capital clubs Panathinaikos and Olympiakos and the rivalry with Olympiakos was inflamed in 1996, when AEK former ace and then-coach joined the Thrylos. AEK have 12 Greek Super League trophies, but it has to be noted that they clinched their last domestic title back in 1994. Speaking of the Greek Cup, the Enosis won their 15th trophy in the competition in 2016, with the team beating Olympiakos in the title game. In the 1966/1967 season AEK made it to the UEFA Cup semis, but Italian giants Juventus proved to be a big catch for the Greek side.