h National teams

Austria rejoices and believes in the fairy tale. © APA/afp / MICHAL CIZEK

“Now we can dream a little”

Austria's national team confidently took advantage of their first chance and managed to avoid relegation early at the Ice Hockey World Championships in Prague. You can read what the players have to say about this and the goal of the quarter-finals here.

The ÖEHV selection defeated Norway 4:1 (0:0,3:0,1:1) on Sunday and got the ticket for the 2025 World Cup in Sweden and Denmark. Peter Schneider (29th/PP, 34th) and Dominic Zwerger (29th) made the decision in the middle third after preparatory work by Marco Rossi. Now even the quarter-finals are possible.

“The fact that we remain at the top for the third year in a row is an incredible achievement,” said Schneider. “It took many years for us to achieve our best performance in an editing game like this. “It was incredible from start to finish, I’m so proud of the team,” explained substitute captain Manuel Ganahl. “We have stayed at the top for three years now, that is an award, we can be very proud. This is very good advertising for ice hockey in Austria,” said Marco Rossi.

“We can be very proud.” Marco Rossi

Austria can go into the final group game without pressure for the first time since 2018 and with another win against Great Britain on Tuesday (12.20 p.m.) they would finish the World Cup in the top ten for the first time in 21 years. There is even a chance of reaching the quarterfinals. Like Finland, Austria has seven points and, if tied, is ahead of the Olympic champions, who still face Denmark and Switzerland.

Roger Bader is the celebrated head coach. © APA/afp / MICHAL CIZEK

“It's incredible, now we can dream a little. In order for these to be fulfilled, we first have to do our homework and that means winning the Great Britain game, that is not a sure-fire success,” said Roger Bader.

Schneider took the lead with a slap shot (29th). Just 40 seconds later, an energetic push from Zwerger, whose attempted pass was deflected into his own goal by a Norwegian, made it 2-0 (29'). With his fourth goal of the tournament, Schneider (34th) finally created a great atmosphere among the thousands of red-white-red fans in the O16.500 Arena, which was well filled with over 2 spectators. “So many Austrian fans, it was an amazing atmosphere. “It’s great to see that we have caused such euphoria,” said Schneider happily.

The Austrians scored 4 goals against Norway. © APA/afp / MICHAL CIZEK

“We knew it would be a very tough and even game. That's what it was at the beginning. Of course, that gave the momentum with the power play goal. “The Rossi line took responsibility for the three goals, they can do that, they already showed that against Canada,” Bader analyzed the game, but emphasized the team management. “I would like to emphasize and say it at every meeting that the strength of Austria is the collective. Starting with a very good David Kickert, the fourth line also worked very well. The star is the team, it’s a cliché, but that’s true for us,” said the Swiss.

Despite the goal being achieved, there is still no celebration. “The players should enjoy it, they can be happy today, nobody says anything against a beer. But the two magic words are recovery and refocus. “From tomorrow the focus will be on Great Britain,” emphasized Bader.

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