PREVIEW: 2014 Football European Championships – Team Austria

Host country Austria eyeing first European title!

This year’s host country won the bronze twice (’95, ’10), but was very successful in past European Junior Championships (’11, ’13), and brought the junior title home to Austria last year.A strong coaching staff has now taken over the team, and, given Austria’s dominance among the European clubs tournaments, the hopes for a first European Championship title seems well within reach for the Austrians!

MEET THE SQUAD

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Two days after the Turkish Airlines Bowl, in which the Austrians were able to beat the U.S. College Claremont McKenna 21-14, national team coach Jakob Dieplinger finalized the Austrian European Championship squad of 45 players.

The majority of the squad is represented by the top players in the Austrian Football League (AFL), including 20 athletes from the reigning Austrian and European club champions, the Raiffeisen Vikings. From other Austrian clubs come seven players come from the Graz Giants and Danube Dragons, and then half a dozen from Europe’s top ranked club the Swarco Raiders. In addition to the two Steelsharks players, two from Swiss Champion Calanda Broncos and the second-division team Vienna Knights.

Their is a 27 year age difference between the youngest player (Florian Probst , 18) and the oldest (Novel Seybold, 45) a gap of almost three decades, but the average age of Team Austria at the European Championships is 24.5 years, quite young.

Austria begins the tournament on Saturday May, 31st they meet the team from Denmark in the UPC Arena in Graz.

Links the the LIVE video feed here: Austria v. Denmark

The final day is on June 7th at Vienna’s Ernst Happel Stadium go on the stage. All information at www.football2014.at .

TEAM AUSTRIA 45 MAN ROSTER

Quarterbacks:
Christoph Gross (25, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Alexander Thury (20, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Wide Receiver:
Clemens Erlsbacher (21, Swarco Raiders);
Thomas Haider (26, Danube Dragons);
Kenzo Mandl (22, Steelsharks Traun);
Georg Pongratz (29, Danube Dragons);
Philipp Sommer (20, Graz Giants);
Christian Steffani (29; Calanda Broncos);
Laurinho Walch (21, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Running backs:
Andreas Hofbauer (21, Swarco Raiders);
Florian Puzzle (21 Danube Dragons);
Daniel Schönet (25, Graz Giants);
Felix Stadler (20, Steelsharks Traun)

Tight End:
Manuel Thaller (24, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Offense Line:
Cosmo Anders (20, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Dragotinits Robert (34, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Daniel Feichter (21, Graz Giants),
Michael Habetin (22, Swarco Raiders);
Bernd Plank (31, Vienna Knights,
Michael Pribyl ( 22 Graz Giants);
Novel Seybold (45, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Tippold Thomas (26, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Defense Line:
Florian Grünsteidl (32, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Philipp Margreiter (26, Swarco Raiders),
Martin Nemeth (25 Danube Dragons);
Alexander Taheri (25, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Alexander Weinberger (29, Graz Giants),
Harald tip Mayer (32, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Linebacker:
Marco Aigner (23, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Ramon Azim (26, Danube Dragons),
Simon Blach (24, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Dustin Illetschko (22, Raiffeisen Vikings),
David Lamprecht (25, Calanda Broncos);
Florian Probst ( 18, Graz Giants),
Paul Werner (22, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Marco Zöchner (21, Graz Giants);

Defensive Backfield:
Arno Andreas (25, Swarco Raiders);
Benjamin Bubik (22, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Christian Kober (25, Danube Dragons);
Markus Krause (25, Swarco Raiders);
Andreas Lunzer (21, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Matthias Rebl (20, Danube Dragons);
Stefan Ruthofer (20, Raiffeisen Vikings);
Valentin Schulz (25, Raiffeisen Vikings)

Kicker:
Christopher Kappel (23, Raiffeisen Vikings)

John McKeon
John McKeon is a former professional and collegiate American Football player and coach now living and working in New York. His goal is to spread news, information, and opinion on the global growth of the sport he loves.
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