Defeat in Vienna could end his side's hopes of qualifying for the World Cup, and his tenure.
The 74-year-old Italian has acknowledged that his time in charge is drawing to a close but intends to see out his current contract, which ends in June next year. It is a decision which may yet be taken out of his hands has criticism grows and the prospect of qualification from Group C slips away - defeat tonight would leave the Irish adrift of Germany, Sweden and the Austrians - although he seemed unpertubed yesterday.
"After this, if I was [Football Association of Ireland chief executive] John Delaney, I would say, 'Giovanni, continue because Giovanni has done a great job in these five years'," said Trapattoni. "I am sure I could develop this team, their quality and their experience very much."