Regionalliga Salzburg Matchday 26: FC Pinzgau Saalfelden vs. SV Kuchl
April 30 2022 (16:00 CET), Saalfelden Arena
Founded in 1954, SV Kuchl spent their early existence languishing in the lower leagues and even lost 23-0 to ASK Salzburg – still a club-record defeat to this day – shortly after their formation. They did win four lower-league titles in the 40 years that followed, but the most successful chapters of their history came after the turn of the millennium.
They gained promotion to the Salzburger Liga, the fourth tier, in 2010 courtesy of a 7-3 victory over SV Schwarzach in the relegation/promotion play-off and then went up to the newly created Regionalliga Salzburg in 2019, where they have been ever since.
Gerhard Struber – who took Austrian Bundesliga outfit Wolfsberger AC on a memorable Europa League run in 2019/20 and then coached English Championship club Barnsley before taking over at New York Red Bulls in the MLS – started his youth career at SV Kuchl.
FC Pinzgau Saalfelden boss Christian Ziege is without the injured Alessandro Ziege, Hasan Ibrahimi and Joao Pedro. Niklas Mühlbacher will be absent for professional reasons, while Jonas Schwaighofer may also miss out. But Kilian Schröcker is set to return from suspension and Lukas Moosmann is available after making his comeback in the cup tie in midweek.
SV Kuchl are expected to go into the third instalment of this triple-header with the same line-up that started the previous two clashes. The key player for Philip Buck’s men will again be centre-forward Christoph Hübl, who has netted three goals in the two matches his side have played against the Mountainous Pine Blues in recent days.
The home victory against Anif did unfortunately not bring about the desired turnaround for Christian Ziege and his charges, who have now lost three of their last five matches in the Regionalliga Salzburg and have been eliminated from the SFV Landescup. That dip in form has seen them fall five points behind leaders Seekirchen, and they dropped down from second to third spot following their 2-1 defeat against Kuchl last weekend.
The Tennengau outfit replaced them in the runners-up position and will be looking to carry the momentum from their wins over FCPS in league and cup into the season run-in. Beforehand, however, they lost to Grödig and drew successive matches against Anif, Seekirchen and bottom club Wals-Grünau. Generally, they tend to be much stronger at Sportplatz Kuchl and have not won on their travels since October 2021.
FC Pinzgau Saalfelden have won five, drawn one and lost 11 of their previous 17 meetings with SV Kuchl. Christian Ziege’s men have lost on all three visits to Kuchl this season but took the three points when the two teams met at the Saalfelden Arena in the league.