Happy holidays for national team after German trauma

The Austrian national team managed to make amends after having suffered a string of humiliating defeats in the Euro2012 qualification.The squad of Dietmar Constantini celebrated a 3-1 win against Latvia in Graz yesterday evening (Tues). The players clad in red-white-red had to put in some extra effort to please their fans after Pavels Mihadjuks took the lead for the away side shortly after half time.FC Admira defender Christopher Dibon equalised the opener in his first appearance for Austria in the 75th minute before two goals by VfB Stuttgart star Martin Harnik sealed the Austrian victory.Constantini said he was pleased with his team’s performance in the first half since they created several decent chances to score. “Unfortunately, we became nervous and uncertain after Latvia had found the net. They are underestimated. Playing against them isn’t easy.”The coach – who came under fire earlier this year when Austria lost against Belgium and Turkey – claimed his squad were making progress. Constantini’s contract runs until the end of this year. Football Federation (ÖFB) President Leo Windtner is in favour of not extending the deal, according to reports. The ÖFB chief has remained tight-lipped about his plans. Sport newspapers claim that Constantini may stay on nevertheless due to the lack of available foreign managers willing to take over. Money matters may also be considered by the ÖFB as big names seem out of reach when it comes to who could take over the struggling national team.Austria’s 3-1 win in the friendly against Latvia in front of 8,500 supporters at the UPC Arena – where league champions Sturm Graz stage their home matches – occurred just four days after the team were beaten 1-2 by rivals Germany in Vienna. The defeat means Austria only have small and theoretical chances to compete in next year’s European Football Championship. The tournament will take place in Poland and Ukraine. Austria and Switzerland cooperated in hosting the most recent Euro in 2008. The event was won by Spain. The “Furia roja” beat Germany – who beat Azerbaijan in the qualification for the Euro2012 yesterday – in the final.Austria are up against Germany in Gelsenkirchen on 2 September before facing Turkey at Vienna’s Ernst Happel Stadium Vienna four days later.Yesterday’s clash with Latvia was the first match after it emerged that Schalke 04 snatched Christian Fuchs from Mainz 05. The DFB Cup winners forked out around four million Euros to procure the services of the vice captain of the Austrian national team. Fuchs previously played for VfL Bochum and SV Mattersburg. Fuchs is considered as one of the best left-backs in the German Bundesliga. He was part of the Team of the Year as chosen by TV broadcaster ZDF.Rapid Vienna, who won the Austrian Bundesliga 32 times but came only fifth last season – signed striker Deni Alar from league rivals Kapfenberg. Rapid announced already some weeks ago that midfielder Guido Burgstaller will join them from Magna Wiener Neustadt. Ex-Magna manager Peter Schöttel was named new Rapid coach.Rapid’s city rivals Austria Vienna snared Wacker Innsbruck keeper Pascal Grünwald, while Magna goalie Saso Fornezzi is expected to join a team abroad. Numerous clubs have signalised their interest in the Slovenian.FC Basel have placed an offer for Rapid’s Christopher Drazan, according to newspapers. The Swiss side – who snatched Aleksandar Dragovic from Austria Vienna half a year ago – celebrated their 14th league title some weeks ago.