Austria beat Iran 5-1 as Polster says farewell
VIENNA, Sept 1 (Reuters) - Austria earned their first win in 2000 by
thrashing Iran 5-1 in an emotional international friendly on Friday in
wich Austria's veteran striker Toni Polster made his farewell.
Goals by Andreas Herzog, Tomislav Kocijan, Christian Mayrleb (two)
and Dietmar Kuehbauer served as a morale-booster forAustria's World Cup
qualifying campaign, which starts on October 7 against Liechtenstein.
Austria at first looked set to continue a series of disappointing showings
when Iranian Farhad Majidi profited from a major defensive error to score
in the sixth minute.
But Herzog equalised in the 39th minute with an indirect free-kick
and Kocijan made it 2-1 for Austria five minutes later on his debut for
the national side.
Mayrleb scored in the 47 minute and added another after a solo run
in the 68th minute after Dietmar Kuehbauer had netted with a long-range
shot in the 66th minute.
Polster, 35, capped a record 95 times in which he scored an Austrian
record 44 goals, played for the opening 20 minutes and almost headed a
goal in the 14th minute.
Polster, who made his last full appearance for Austria against Italy
in the 1998 World Cup finals in France, also sang his latest single "Servus"
(Goodbye) on the pitch during the interval.
Polster played for a number of foreign clubs -- AC Turin, Sevilla,
Rayo Vallecano, Cologne and Borussia Moenchengladbach -- and ended his
club career at SV Salzburg last season.
He will begin working as a marketing consultant for Germany's Borussia
Moenchengladbach this month.