23.04.2019 20:54
Team, Bundesliga, TSV Hartberg, Match report

Clinical Rapid too good for Hartberg

Fresh from Saturday's last gasp drama in Altach, Rapid were again on the road on Tuesday as they travelled to take on TSV Hartberg, looking to avenge some poor results against the promoted side: in Autumn the east-Styrian minnows had defeated Rapid 0:3, and went on to claim a point in the Allianz Stadium when the teams next met. Didi Kühbauer rotated his team for the game, making no less than six changes. In came Christopher Dibon, Andrei Ivan, Andrija Pavlovic, Boli Bolingoli and Mario Sonnleitner as Rapid turned to fresh legs to get the job done.

A still-slumbering Rapid defence was almost punished just forty seconds after kick-off, when Kovacevic burst through a weak backline only to be denied by a save from Richard Strebinger (1.). But it was Rapid who broke deadlock, albeit with a helping hand from Hartberg keeper Swete, who contrived to punch a cross from Christoph Knasmüllner into his own net - 1:0 (14.)! The goal seemed to sting the home side into life: Rep tested Strebinger just minutes after the goal (17,), before the Viennese keeper did well to tip a header from Rasswalder over the bar (20.). Minutes later though a high free-kick into the Green & Whites' penalty caused problems for Strebinger, with the ball eventually rolling over the line to drag Hartberg level - 1:1 (28.). On the stroke of half time Rep was again at the centre of the action as he attempted to chip Strebinger, who pulled off a smart stop to ensure the scores were level at half-time (45.).

 

The half-time introduction of Dejan Ljubicic served to steady the ship for Rapid and provided a solid base from which probing attacks could be launched. The switch paid instant dividends, as Stephan Auer fed Thomas Murg, who found the far corner of the goal with low finish - 2:1 (48.)! The goal was Murg's third in three games. Rapid now looked in control, and it was Murg again who had a huge hand in the Hütteldorfers' third of the evening, showing excellent skill and ability before perfectly picking out Bolingoli on the edge of the six-yard box, who headed home with authority - 3:1 (62.)!

Kamara tried his luck with a long-range effort for Hartberg, but it was Rapid who remained the more likely to add to their tally: Srdjan Grahovac drew a save from Swete, who scrambled to his feet in time to also save from Max Hofmann, who had gotten to the rebound (72.). As the game entered the Rapid-Viertelstunde, a moment of magic from Andrija Pavlovic settled matters: Stefan Schwab picked out the Serbian forward, who produced a sumptuous finish, delicately lifting the ball over Swete and into the far corner - 4:1 (74.)!

Cancola grabbed a consolation for the hosts from a set-piece (82.), but after Pavlovic's special goal the result was never in doubt. Rapid claimed an important and deserved victory, which they will look to compound when Hartberg visit the capital in a re-run of today’s game at the weekend.

(gw)

 

tipico Bundesliga, 27th round:
TSV Hartberg - SK Rapid 2:4 (1:1)
Profertil-Arena, 3.900 Attendance, Ref Gishamer

Goals: 0:1 Swete (14./Own Goal), 1:1 Rep (28.), 1:2 Murg (49.), 1:3 Bolingoli (62.), 1:4 Pavlovic (74.), 2:4 Cancola (83.);

Hartberg: Swete – Blauensteiner, Huber, Rotter, Rasswalder (66./Rasswalder) – Kainz (77./Ilic) , Sittsam, Camara – Heil (66./Heil) – Kovacevic, Rep;

SK Rapid: Strebinger – Auer, Sonnleitner, Hofmann, Bolingoli – Grahovac, Schwab – Murg, Knasmüllner (46./Ljubicic), Ivan (71./Schobesberger) – Pavlovic (78./Badji);

Yellow Cards: Kainz, Cancola; Bolingoli;