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'It was not easy to play our game because they play, most of the time, long balls'

Bayern Munich and Austria star David Alaba was frustrated with how Ireland approached their qualifier on Sunday.

David Alaba.
David Alaba.

AUSTRIA MIDFIELDER DAVID Alaba has expressed frustration with the Republic of Ireland’s “long-ball” approach after the two sides played out a 1-1 draw in Dublin.

The Boys in Green came from behind to take a point on home soil after Martin Hinteregger had given Austria the lead. Ireland struck five minutes from time through Jon Walters, who used his strength to beat the defender before finishing past goalkeeper Heinz Lindner.

Ireland’s direct approach saw them create a number of chances as they chased a result, with Alaba disappointed that Austria could not put their own stamp on the game.

“I think it was not an easy game today against Ireland,” Alaba told Goal. “They play very hard, very aggressive, and tried to push us back.

We tried to play our game, but it was not easy to play our game because they play, most of the time, long balls from behind to the front. It’s not easy to create chances or a game when you’re just receiving long balls.”

The Bayern Munich star also played down talk of unrest in the Austria camp — something which had been mooted in Irish media in the build-up to the game due to the number of withdrawals from the squad. Andreas Ulmer had pulled out of the squad in order to get married, while their goalkeeping and attacking options were severely diminished through injury and suspension.

Alaba dismissed the claims and believes that the squad who travelled to Dublin were united as they took a point from Ireland.

We know that we have a great team. If someone is missing with injury or a yellow card, I think we have the quality to change those players,” the 24-year-old said.

“I think we have seen today that we had the chances to win, but I think at the end 1-1 is okay.”

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