ÖFB: Rangnick’s plan is popular with players

22-year-old Baumgartner is no kid at Red Bull, but the lower Austrian is no stranger to the style of play favored by the new captain. “But it’s not as if only Red Bull is playing like that. All of us have already played it in our careers – even if not constantly and with intensity. Now it’s important to ‘get the processes in our heads as fast as we can.'”

Baumgartner said he himself is a player who loves possession. “To have the ball, you have to put pressure on your opponent. Ralph Rangnick is unparalleled,” said team member at German club Hoffenheim. “You can see how organized, how clear the idea is. He’s an absolute pioneer, especially in moments of transition.”

ÖFB’s focus is on attack

After two days of training and three sessions under new ÖFB boss Ralph Rangnick, the direction was clear: focus on attacking. Running strength, not age, is decisive.

Experience as a great asset

Rangnick is a coach that every player can learn a lot from because of his career milestones alone. “I immediately noticed how experienced the guy was,” Baumgartner said. “He has watched many aspects of this sport.” The German brought in Hoffenheim or RB Leipzig, but he was recently in charge of a very big club with Manchester United.

Baumgartner confirmed that TSG Hoffenheim is still full of the former coach. Rangnick coached the club from 2006 to 2010 and led it to Germany’s Oberhaus. Since his appointment as head of the Austrian Football Association (ÖFB) team at the end of April, Baumgartner has asked long-serving players and staff. One conclusion: sometimes things can get tough under Rangnick’s leadership. “Because he handles things so harshly and frankly. But that’s a positive thing, because it’s something that makes us move forward,” Baumgartner emphasized.

Jeba / Christian Walgram

Baumgartner (left Rangnick) and Co. listened carefully to what the team leader had to say

Strikers must also be active

Rangnick’s style of play also compels strikers like Sasa Kalajdzic. “The word he emphasized the most was us,” the 24-year-old from Vienna said of the first few days under Rangnick’s reign. “What he imagines is that we play very intensely and actively against the ball. His philosophy is strong and offensive.”

Like his rival Marko Arnautovic, Kalajic also has to adapt to new tasks. “When I play, I will be asked to be the first to hit the ball as a striker.” He is ready for it.

“Red Bull Soccer, what is this?”

Konrad Laimer has little use for the theory that the Austrian Football Association team will play “Red Bull Soccer” right after Rangnick’s appointment. The midfielder played for Red Bull Salzburg from 2014 to 2017 and has been under contract with RB Leipzig ever since. However, there can be no doubts about the unified playing style during this time, Salzburger emphasized on Tuesday at camp in Bad Tatzmannsdorf.

“Red Bull Soccer, what is that? Is that salt? I can’t even describe it,” Laimer said. “I played in Leipzig for five years and I always felt like I was playing different things.” There are clear differences between current RB Leipzig coach Domenico Tedesco and Rangnick, who coached the Saxons in 2018/19. “This is completely normal. Everyone has their own ideas.”

New content has also been added to Rangnick himself compared to his time in Leipzig. “That was a few years ago, he had other stops and experienced something a little different. You keep learning. Of course there are also some things you know, it’s the same with every coach, there are some favorite things you go through,” Laimer said.

Laimer earns ‘enormous potential’

The 25-year-old made it clear that the German’s assumption of the position did not mean an entirely new territory for any player on the team. “Pressing, playing against the ball, everyone has that in some way at their club. It’s about the basic principles that we try to work on in training.” Laimer asked to be patient in this regard. “It didn’t all happen overnight. But I am very confident that if we do what is required, we will have good matches.”

Konrad Laimer at the press conference

Geba / Michael Mendel

He believes in a successful future for the national team under Rangnick’s leadership

Laimer hopes that long-term success with Rangnick will finally come. “There is huge potential in the team. We have a really good squad with a good group of players who are playing at the highest level week after week. There is no reason why we can’t do the same here. But the most important thing is that we don’t always talk, we also have to show That’s constantly on the pitch. We’ve lost that in recent years.”

The 20-times team player described Rangnick’s appointment as a fresh start. “You can also tell during training from the intensity and the desire to run that everyone really wants it. It will be interesting to see how things develop. There is a certain plan for the game that the team has to stick to, but of course it is not determined from the first minute. We are still playing football and there are still free decisions.”

Trimmel does not see conversion problems

Christopher Tremmel, 35, the oldest player in the current Austrian FA squad, has had “only positive impressions” of the new team boss so far. “I’ve heard only positive things beforehand. Everyone knows where they stand, not only in Germany, but now all over the world. He’s a very good coach and very organized. The challenge now is to get all the input to the team in such a short time,” said Burgenlander.

Tremmel doubted that switching to the Rangnick philosophy wouldn’t be too difficult. “You could say that there are many players who might not be used to it from their clubs. You ask a question or another question, that is the purpose of having units. But I am in good spirits so that we can implement this quickly.”

For the defender himself, changing the head of the team does not mean any serious tactical changes. “We play similar football at Union Berlin at certain stages, so the change is not that big.” But one thing is clear for Tremmel: “Starting and pressing in midfield only work together. If a player misses a situation, it can be difficult for others.”

Rangnick has a ‘cool feeling’

Meanwhile, Rangnick was influenced by the conditions in Bad Tatzmannsdorf. You have the best conditions, very good accommodations and a great hotel,” the 63-year-old said after the second session. On Tuesday afternoon, there was a short training break for the Kickers, and two more units are scheduled for Wednesday before the final training session before the trip to Croatia on Thursday. The UEFA Nations League kicks off against the world runners-up on Friday (8.45pm, live on ORF1) in Osijek.

According to Rangnick, the courses so far have been “lively”, and a special focus has been placed on tactical content. The first experiences with the team left him “feeling great”. You can feel that the team is a “real unit”.

Austria’s sporting director Peter Schoettle said Rangnick made a “really good first impression” of himself. “Ralph’s speech was very moving for everyone involved. It gets straight to the point, and it constantly emphasizes the sense of teamwork you need.”

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