WHow will Eintracht Frankfurt face the challenges of the new season? Will she be able to show her international stature in the Champions League, which was enough for the final triumph in Seville in the Europa League, and can she rise above mediocrity in the Bundesliga?
After the first week of training, the path that coach Oliver Glasner wants to take with his new team in order to meet their own demands is not yet clear. But at this early stage in Frankfurt, the route and the condition of the road are already clearer than in other Bundesliga clubs. Mainly because sports director Markus Krösche created facts on the transfer market very early on: “If no more regular players leave, I don’t think we’ll sign anyone else,” said Glasner at the season opening press conference last Monday.
Mario Götze, Lucas Alario, Randal Kolo Muani, Jerome Onguene, Hrvoje Smolcic, Faride Alidou, Aurelio Buta and Marcel Wenig signed their contracts long ago, and Ridvan Yilmaz, the Turkish left-back at Besiktas Istanbul, will do so soon. These newcomers significantly upgrade the Frankfurt squad, enormously expand the tactical possibilities of the coach, but also increase his tasks.
(Too) many professionals with regular place potential?
Glasner not only has to filter out the right mix from the wide range, but also keep the players happy. Because there will be some hardships. The argument that the Eintracht program with the league, Champions League and DFB Cup is so extensive that everyone will come to their own times is only partially valid. Especially on the offensive, Eintracht has so many professionals with regular place potential that a few more minutes of rotation will hardly be enough to satisfy a player who has been left behind.
The problem becomes acute if Glasner would only compete with a tip, i.e. if he stuck to the principle of success of the three-man chain. The Austrian would then have to choose between Alario, the €6.5m reinforcement from Leverkusen, and highly acclaimed French striker Kolo Muani and his Europa League hero Borré. Spoiled for choice for the coach, spoiled for choice for the players. This case will probably only occur if Filip Kostic stays with Eintracht.
Glasner clearly prefers the formation of the back four and also tried to implement it in the team in his debut season in Frankfurt. However, with moderate success, mainly because it robbed Kostic of much of his strength. The second Eintracht-specific disadvantage of the back four, which made Glasner move away from her, has been resolved by Hinteregger’s career end. Ndicka would have been forced to switch to the unloved position of left-back or sit on the bench.