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Unemployed footballers to be taught match skills

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Unemployed footballers to be taught match skills
Roland Linz used to play for Austria Wien. Photo: APA
15:20 CEST+02:00
Austria's unemployed footballers will be able to kick-start their careers from July - but rather than having to go to the job centre and look for some other form of employment, the Public Employment Service (AMS) has set up a football course to help rusty players improve their skills.

The Heute paper reports that former stars such as Andreas Dober and Roland Linz, as well as 143 other footballers who no longer play professionally, will be able to sign up for the training, which is run by former Austrian football manager Paul Gludovatz.

The training will be held in Steinbrunn, Burgenland, and Gludovatz will be doing refreshers on technical and tactical aspects of the game.

In order to get plenty of match practise, games will constantly be scheduled against other teams.

“I’m convinced that we’ll be able to make some players professionals again, 60 or 70 percent must still be employable,” Gludovatz said. He estimates that his team - in danger of being dubbed the 'Dole Rangers' - will have around 20 players to start with, and possibly some former stars among them.

The decline of Austria’s national team has coincided with the fall from grace of Austria's big clubs. No Austrian club has ever won a European title, but clubs like Rapid Vienna, Austria Vienna and Red Bull Salzburg used to be contenders. The Austrian League is not well known internationally.

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