90min

5 Things to Know About Austrian Side Wolfsberger AC

James Merrills
Wolfsberger enjoyed a succesful group stage in the Europa League.
Wolfsberger enjoyed a succesful group stage in the Europa League. / Soccrates Images/Getty Images
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When the Europa League knockout stage draw took place many people were forced to do a double take whenever Wolfsberger AC were mentioned.

So let's get this out of the way early: no, Wolfsberger are not the German Bundesliga side Wolfsburg, they're an Austrian Bundesliga side.

The draw for the last 32 saw Wolfsberger drawn against Tottenham Hotspur, with a trip to Spurs' new stadium on the cards. The Europa League fairytale can either go one of two ways, qualification to the next round at Spurs' expense, or the chance of having their European dreams being crushed by Jose Mourinho.

The Austrian outfit recently qualified Group K having finished second ahead of Feyenoord and CSKA Moscow, and finished four points being group winners Dinamo Zagreb.

Here's a few things you should know about Wolfsberger AC...


1. They Are Known as 'WAC' By Their Fans

Wolfsberger were well supported when stadiums were full.
Wolfsberger were well supported when stadiums were full. / Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Wolfsberger Athletik Club's full name is, well, a bit of a mouthful, so fans have nicknamed their team 'WAC' - which is short and sweet, and we rate it.


2. Their Official Name Is Actually RZ Pellets Wolfsberger AC

A sponsorship deal signed during the 2014/15 season saw the team rebranded as RZ Pellets Wolfsburger AC. Trying saying that after a few Austrian beers! You can see from the picture above how they've even incorporated the sponsor into their logo.

Imagine the outrage if a sponsor bought the naming rights to a team in England. We all remember how it went down when Mike Ashley renamed St. James' Park, imagine if he had've renamed the whole club Newcastle Sports Direct United...


3. Partnership With Neighbours SK St. Andra

Wolfsberger has now become a popular team in Austria.
Wolfsberger has now become a popular team in Austria. / Markus Tobisch/Getty Images

In 2007, Wolfsberger entered into a bizarre agreement with local team SK St. Andra. They pooled togethers resources on things like administration, economy, nutrition, football and worked cohesively to help further their sporting interests.

This is a living example of "if you can't beat them join them", and that's exactly what Wolfsberger did. Promotion to the Austrian Bundesliga was secured at the end of the 2011/12 season, with the partnership ending soon after.


4. They Enjoyed a Successful Maiden Austrian Bundesliga in 2012/3

Wolfsberger fans are able to watch Bundesliga football and take in the Austrian countryside from their own seat.
Wolfsberger fans are able to watch Bundesliga football and take in the Austrian countryside from their own seat. / Christian Drobny/Getty Images

After being promoted they achieved a respectable fifth place finish in the 2012/13 season in a league with ten teams. WAC endured a number of sticky patches throughout the season and won only one of their last nine matches.

Despite this poor run, they were able to beat the drop, and have been in the top flight ever since.


5. This Is Only Their Second Europa League Campaign

Is it too big a task to beat Spurs in the next round?
Is it too big a task to beat Spurs in the next round? / Pool/Getty Images

Wolfsberger first ever Europa League campaign was actually last season, after they secured a remarkable third place finish in the league in 2018/19.

They finished bottom of their group, winning just won game...but in fairness they were in a bloody hard group - with Borussia Monchengladbach, Basaksehir and AS Roma. They won their opening game before three losses and two draws.


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