Review of the year 2021, part six
As the new year comes in, FC Augsburg are taking a look back over the last 12 months. Here’s part six of the review of the year: June.
Shortly after making his Bundesliga debut against FC Bayern München, Lukas Petkov signed a professional contract with the club. The young prospect was then sent out on a 12-month loan to SC Verl. Assistant coach Reiner Maurer also signed a contract extension.
Although most of the FCA first-team squad headed off for a well-deserved break following an energy-sapping season, a few players still had a big event to come in their schedules. Switzerland’s Ruben Vargas, Fredrik Jensen of Finland and the Austrian international Michael Gregoritsch began preparations for the European Championship, whilst Carlos Gruezo of Ecuador and Sergio Córdova of Venezuela jetted off to the Copa América.
It was a great achievement for Finland to even make it to the finals, but Jensen and Co. went one further when they beat Denmark on matchday 1 and narrowly missed out on qualification to the knockout stages. Michael Gregoritsch and Austria were able to reach this stage of the competition, however. Gregoritsch gave his side a 2-1 lead when he netted during their victory against North Macedonia on matchday 1. They would be eliminated in the round of 16, narrowly losing to eventual champions Italy after extra-time.
Ruben Vargas and Switzerland and our Czech Tomáš Koubek, who was called up to the national squad after the initial announcement, also reached the round of 16. A late comeback from Switzerland helped them to a win over world champions France on penalties, with Vargas converting his spot kick.
The Copa América was somewhat disappointing from the perspective of the FCA players. Carlos Gruezo missed games due to a Coronavirus infection, and Córdova’s Venezuela were knocked out at the group stage. Gruezo returned for Ecuador’s quarter-final against Argentina, but they were beaten by the eventual winners.