(Translated by Thomas Snaith)
Before the game:
Six days after Basel lost 1:2 to Linz at St. Jakob-Park, the return leg fixture was scheduled. Marcel Koller made three changes compared to the first game. Ricky van Wolfswinkel suffered a concussion during the 1st leg in Basel, who was replaced by Kemal Ademi. Raoul Petretta and Noah Okafor replaced Blas Riveros and Afimico Pululuin the starting lineup.
LASK-Caoch Valérien Ismaël was forced to replace the injured Christian Ramsebner with ex-FC Aarau player Emanuel Pogatetz.
The first Half:
Both teams started the fixture with a concentrated, physical performance. Within the 1st 25 minutes of play both teams created several chances. First it was João Klauss de Mello who suddenly appeared in front of Jonas Omlin, who failed to hit the target.
This LASK opportunity was a wakeup call for FCB, who then reacted and became more dangerous. Moments later it was Basel who nearly scored the opener: Kemal Ademi headed the ball onto the crossbar after a cross by Noah Okafor. Jonas Omlin´s qualities were needed, preventing LASK from scoring just seconds later. Samuel Tettah fired a well struck shot at Basel´s keeper, who made an impressive save.
In the last phase of the first half FCB was the more dominant team, without creating any more clear chances – there was one debatable situation: Five minutes before the end of the 1st half Stocker failed to connect with Okafor´s cross and was consequently knocked to the ground by LASK-keeper Aliyar Aghayev, but there was no reaction by the referee.
the second half:
As the second half began both teams played with less intensity. There were no clear chances on both sides. The opening goal was not a result of an impressive LASK attack but was more a misfortunate situation for FC Basel: Reinhold Ranftl´s cross was deflected into the goal by Raoul Petretta… unlucky. After LASK´s opener there was a long phase without many chances, until 10 minutes before the end: Silvan Widmer sprinted down the right wing, passed into the center, setting up Kemal Ademi to score, 1:1!
All or nothing for FCB! Now there is more space for the home team as Basel needed to score a 2nd goal. LASK didn’t waste the opportunity and scored another 2 goals. Thomas Goiginer and Marco Raguz sealed the deal for the Austrians. 3:1 final score.
After the game:
The 1:2 defeat in the 1st leg was too much for FCB to handle. FCB did improve their performance compared to the fixture in Switzerland but their opponents had time on their side, which they tactically made use of. FC Basel would have needed that little bit of extra luck on the night; such as when Stocker was knocked down in the penalty box or if LASK´s opening goal wouldn’t have been deflected over the line. LASK paved their way to victory in the 1st leg, especially as they were the better team.
Even though Basel is very disappointed to have failed to reach the next round of the competition, the group stage of the UEFA Europa League is waiting around the corner.
LASK – FC Basel 1893 3:1 (0:0)
Linz City Stadium. – 14’000 Supporters. – Referee Aliyar Aghayev (Azerbaijan).
Goals: 59. Ranftl 1:0 (Tetteh). 80. Ademi 1:1 (Widmer). 89. Goiginger 2:1 (Michorl). 94. Raguz 3:1 (Frieser).
LASK: Schlager; Wiesinger, Trauner, Pogatetz; Ranftl, Michorl, Holland, Renner; Goiginger, Klauss de Mello (87. Raguz), Tetteh (77. Frieser).
FCB: Omlin; Widmer, Alderete, Cömert, Petretta; Frei, Balanta (86. Pululu); Stocker, Zuffi (55. Bua), Okafor (64. Campo); Ademi.
Notes: LASK without, Ramsebner and Reiter (all injured). FCB without Kuzmanovic, Tushi, van Wolfswinkel und Xhaka (all injured). Substitutes FCB: Bua, Campo, Dimitriou, Kaiser, Nikolic, Pululu and Riveros. – Yellow Cards: 51. Ranftl (foul) 63. Stocker (foul). – 11. Ademi, Header onto the crossbar.