Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I'll Bide My Time

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

I'll Bide My Time

Article excerpt

Byline: Adam Steel

Emanuel Pogatetz is aiming to use his Boro performances as a lever to force back into the Austria squad.

Pogatetz is still on international ice, frozen out by coach Josef Hickersberger after criticising him in public.

He missed out again this afternoon when the Euro 2008 co-hosts faced Malta (5pm), but is hoping to be recalled for or after the upcoming friendlies against Ghana and France.

"I'm not picked so I'm quite disappointed, but I'm always open to go back to the national team," said the centre-back.

"But at the moment it doesn't seem that the manager will pick me. We won the last two games against not very good teams and maybe they will win again tonight, so there is no point for him to change the squad.

"But I will just wait for the future. They are playing hard teams after that like France away and Ghana.

"We will see how the team will defend then and maybe he will decide to pick me again."

Hickersberger said Austria's players were entirely responsible for a string of five defeats in six last year, but Pogatetz told the media that the coach should also take the rap.

Those comments led to his exile but he is now letting his football do the talking and feels a string of key displays for Boro merit a recall.

"I'm thinking that I should be picked for the Austrian team because we don't have many defenders playing abroad and I'm also in good form at the moment," said the 24-year-old. "So I think I could improve the squad, but if the manager doesn't think so I can't do anything about it.

"All I can do is perform here week after week and hope he picks me."

Pogatetz will tune in to see how Austria get on in Malta and is hoping to be contacted by the Austrian FA sooner, rather than later.

He said: "At the moment I'm just concentrating at Boro, but I will watch the national team against Malta and hope that they do well and win. …

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