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Euro 2016 profile: Austria have extra dimensions besides Alaba


David Alaba is the key player as give their Euro 2016 profile on Austria, and their Group F odds look exploitable with the pool wide open.

We’re profiling all 24 teams that will be competing in France, so punters will have an expert view as Europe’s finest compete this summer.

This time we focus on Austria, appearing for the second time after their first time as co-hosts in 2008.

Das Team now face a winnable Group F comprised of Hungary, Iceland and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal with Winner having them at 23/10 to top their pool.

History at the Euros: As co-hosts of the 2008 European Championships, Austria were knocked out in the group stage after drawing with Poland and losing to Croatia and Germany.

Qualifying for the first-time ever for the Euros with this upcoming edition, the Austrian finished top of their pool, recording an undefeated nine wins and a draw.

Veteran striker Marc Janko scored six during the campaign in which he had to travel to and from Australia for the first six months, while versatile and marauding David Alba netted four.

Head coach: Former Grasshoppers Zurich midfielder Marcel Koller won the Swiss league seven times before venturing into management.

In 2005/06, Koller won Bundesliga promotion with German side Bochum and kept them up for four seasons before being sacked for being too defensive.

After two years out of a job spent studying coaching in Italy and Germany, he was a surprise choice for the Austrian national job, but has channelled the immense spirit within the squad and turned it into results.

Sky Bet offer superb top odds of 7/4 for Koller to take Austria into the quarter-finals.

Key player: Still just 23, Alaba has evolved into a world-class talent. The Bayern Munich player has been utilised as a left back, centre half, in midfield or even as a number 10.

Leicester City’s Christian Fuchs plays left back for Austria, while Alaba is used in the engine room where he excels with his tackling, vision, energetic pressing and eye for goal.

Rising star: Red Bull Leipzig’s Marcel Sabitzer is a direct, fast goal-scoring left winger with superb dribbling skills.

At 18 he was linked to Manchester United and Juventus, but moved to Leipzig for fear of being stuck in a giant club’s reserves. He spent last year on loan at fellow Red Bull franchise Salzburg, scoring 19 in 33 league appearances and now has Europe’s elite back on alert.

Wildcard: Janko took on the goal burden in qualifying and the veteran striker has an outstanding record for his new club Basel since arriving last summer, netting 16 in 17 games.

Janko also boasts an impressive Austria record, netting 26 in 51 caps leaving him joint sixth highest scorer for his nation.

Confirmed Austria Euro 2016 fixtures:
All kick-offs are British Summer time (BST)
Tuesday, June 14th: Austria v Hungary (17:00); Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux, ITV
Saturday, June 18th: Portugal v Austria (20:00); Parc des Princes, Paris, BBC
Wednesday, June 22nd: Iceland v Austria (17:00); Stade de France, Paris, BBC​

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