VIENNA - Austria have dropped controversial striker Marko Arnautovic from their squad for next month's Euro 2012 qualifier against Germany, coach Didi Constantini saying the decision was for the good of the team.
The decision came less than two weeks after the fiery striker was axed by his club Werder Bremen for unspecified reasons amid reports he had been in a nightclub two days before a Bundesliga match.
Arnautovic, who has scored three goals in Austria's qualifying campaign, also performed poorly when his national side lost successive matches to Belgium and Turkey in March, seriously denting their qualification hopes.
"It's a decision for the good of the team," said Constantini. "He'll only return when he has fundamentally changed. He has great potential but he does not call upon it."
The 22-year-old managed only three goals in 25 Bundesliga appearances for Werder this season - two of them in his second game - having joined the club after an equally problematic season with Inter Milan.
Austria are fourth in Group A with seven points from five games and Germany lead with a maximum 15 points from the same number of matches.
Germany have won their last five games against their neighbours, several by large margins, and have not lost to them for 25 years.
"We're going to try and take points off Germany even if that sounds unrealistic," said Constantini of the June 3 match in Vienna. "We must try to beat Germany and get three points."