1956 - 1967: Austria as a "jo-jo club"
1956/57: For the first time in its history the club comes across
the word relegation. After a 9th place in the autumn term, the club
finishes at the 13th (out of 14) and is relegated to the "Tauern
1957/58: The Tauern-League champions are knocked out by WSV Donawitz
in the promotion play-offs.
1958/59: Promotion after victories over Radenthein, FC Lustenau
(which makes us to the "Western Champion") and Stadlau
(4:2 on aggregate).
1959/60: After a miserable start to the new season, chairman Karl
Sachs decides to strengthen the young team with an outstanding player:
Erich Probst from FC Zurich is signed for a record fee of 90.000
ATS. Probst scores 15 goals and helps to secure league status.
1960-1967: The highlights of Salzburg`s up and down years. The
team is too strong for the newly-found Westliga but too weak for
the Staatsliga (later also known as Nationalliga) : 3 times relegated
and 3 times promoted. In international action, the club achieves
some remarkable results: in 1961 Salzburg beats Ferencvaros 3:2
and Altay Izmir by 3 goals to nil. German’s champions Nürnberg
are held to a goalless draw. In 1964 Salzburg is beaten by just
two goals at home to Espanyol Barcelona whose team included such
outstanding players as Alfredo di Stefano or Ladislav Kubala. Left
winger Adi Macek becomes the first native Salzburger to appear in
Austria’s national team in the legendary 3:2 win over England
1967 - 1972: Salzburg makes it to the top
Peter Grosser, Salzburg’s top star in the early 70s
1967/68: In 1967 Salzburg is promoted and the club forms the basis
for a top club. Team manager Günter Praschak signs 19 times
international Horst Hirnschrodt from Austria Vienna and Karl Kodat,
who is notorious for causing troubles. The newly-founded team struggles
during the season and finishes at the disappointing 12th place.
1968/69: Further signings strengthen the side and thus Salzburg
finishes at the 6th position. The success hast its impact and consequently
a new Lehen stadium is built. Sepp Weißkind, Austria Salzburg’s
new chairman, is definitely responsible for the new ground. The
1968/69 season is the first one with a real kit sponsor!
1969/70: In the summer of ’69 Salzburg is able to sign top
player Peter Grosser from 1860 Munich for free! Further signings
(Blutsch, Filzmoser) mean that for the time in its history, the
club is believed to finish at the top. Unfortunately, the club has
to move Itzling because of the ongoing construction work at Lehen.
The team doest not meet the expectations and Günter Praschak
is forced to step down. Karl Schlechta becomes his successor. After
some remarkable results, the club finishes at the 8th place.
1970/71: Salzburg’s best season due to further signings.
The club wins its group in the Intertotocup despite tough competition
from clubs like Germany’s Kaiserslautern. A 1:0 away victory
at Wattens helps to achieve the Austria Wintercrown. After the break,
Salzburg thrashes Austria Vienna 6:0 (goals by Kodat(4), Ritter
and Weidinger), Salzburgs biggest success so far. The crucial title
game takes place at Innsbruck’s Tivoli and 7000 Salzburger
make their way to Tyrol. A disputable line-up is the reason for
the loss of the title. Just one point was missing for the first
title in the club’s history. After victories over Vasas Budapest,
Lanerossi Vicenza und Csepel Budapest the club reaches the Mitropacup-Final
which is lost 1:3 against Bosnia’s Celik Zenica.
1971/72: Salzburg’s first UEFA-CUP appearance is the highlight
of the season but the club is unlucky. A 3:1 home win is not enough
to make it to the second round because of a 1:4 away defeat against
UT Arad (Romania). The home leg against Arad was played at the SAK
ground and was the last before Austria Salzburg’s return to
Lehen. The opening game at Lehen against Tunisia’s national
team (3:2 to Salzburg) in front of 12.000 spectators was marred
by a brawl between Peter Grosser and a Tunisian player. Both players
were red-carded. After Karl Kodats tranfer to Royal Antwerp the
club achieves the fourth place under coach Erich Hof.