UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

Austria coach Ralf Rangnick on Austria's EURO ambitions, Group D rivals and coaching demands – interview

"We want to show what we can do," says Ralf Rangnick as he explains why Austria should not be underestimated ahead of UEFA EURO 2024.

Rangnick: 'We want to be hard to score against'

Ralf Rangnick has high hopes for his Austria side as they prepare for their third EURO finals in a row. The former Schalke, Leipzig and interim Manchester United coach took charge in April 2022 and guided his new team to qualification as Group F runners-up, finishing just a point behind section winners Belgium.

Speaking to UEFA.com, Rangnick discussed his ambitions for this summer's tournament, what he expects of his players and the quality of midfielder Nicolas Seiwald.

Every team's EURO 2024 fixtures

On his pride at leading Austria at EURO 2024

It's something very special. Many of my team currently play in Germany, and I was active in Germany as well for a very long time. So it is a special highlight for all of us to be part of it. A lot of our players are playing at top [German] clubs where they developed. Of course it's an advantage in terms of experience, but also in terms of the quality of the players. And if we don't suffer too many injuries, we have a team that can play a vital role in the EURO.

Rangnick on Austria's EURO 2024 challenge

On his team's strengths

If we're complete, then we're a team that is very hard to beat. We're able to compete with anyone at a high level. We saw that during last year's friendlies against Germany and Italy, but also during the EURO qualifiers against Sweden. Even against Belgium we were about to turn the result in our favour in the second game.

We're not going to the EURO just to participate. We want to show what we can do. We are aware that our group is not easy at all. On the other hand, we have faith in ourselves and believe we can qualify for the next round.

On Group D rivals

With France we might have the strongest opponents of all right at the start [of the tournament]. They are the absolute favourites for the title, not only at this EURO, but also in two years at the World Cup. France surely must be the nation with the highest quality. Even if the starting XI are injured, the 11 substitutes are not much weaker. So the first match will be a huge challenge.

Afterwards, we'll see. We'll only know our next opponents in March after the play-off games. And then the third match is against the Netherlands. If you want to get through that group, you’ll need at least four, but maybe even five or six points, and we're aware of that situation.

Austria's road to Germany: Every goal

On demands of his players

My expectations of the players at the EURO is that we are a united team both on and off the pitch and we want to be the best defensive team. If we can get these two things right on the pitch, we'll be doing quite well, and on the other hand we are quite good at scoring goals and creating chances. But as I said we must hope to have all players available. I knew about half of the team before from my time at Salzburg and Leipzig. All of these factors together made this job a very attractive offer.

On Nicolas Seiwald

Nici is one of many players who have developed enormously in the last few years. I've known him since he was 16. It's similar with Xaver Schlager and the two of them together have simply played outstanding games as a double six during [EURO] qualification. They have been our centrepiece and provided enormous defensive stability.

I hope and wish that Nici will now get enough games before the EURO to be in rhythm. That's especially important for his position. He's always done a really excellent job so far and he's a humble guy who's still self-confident on the pitch. We're glad to have him.

Sabitzer on Austria's EURO qualification