IIn four days, a new era begins for Eintracht. For the first time in its history, the club is allowed to take part in the Champions League. At the start there is a home game against the Portuguese competitor Sporting Lisbon, which according to general opinion should be won in order not to be forced to act early on the big stage.
Oliver Glasner’s football team made impressive use of the opportunity to gain more self-confidence for the eagerly awaited game with a win. On Saturday, in the official highlight match of the fifth Bundesliga matchday, Frankfurt beat RB Leipzig 4-0 in their own stadium.
“The game was well deserved,” said RB coach Domenico Tedesco on Sky. “We completely missed the basics, we weren’t on the pitch at all in the first half. (…) We were terrible, really, a catastrophe.” That was “far too little” for RB Leipzig’s claims.
Concord without Pellegrini
It was the first home win of the still young season and at the same time the first for almost six months for the team, which after the summer break had only come out of the starting blocks in the middle. But things are looking up for the Europa League winners: with eight points, he has moved up to mid-table.
Eintracht quickly made it clear that they would push hard to extend their good record against the Saxons; The Red Bulls have never won in Frankfurt since they were promoted to the first class in 2016. Christopher Lenz replaced Italy’s Luca Pellegrini as a left-back in the back four, who was out at short notice due to “muscular problems”, as the Frankfurt team explained. At Leipzig, Peter Gulacsi, who has recovered from a hip injury, returned between the posts. And the Hungarian was under heavy fire.
Kamada successful on the third attempt
Driven by Djibril Sow, Sebastian Rode and Mario Götze in midfield, Eintracht played a combination game that required intensive running, to which the opponent’s defense responded insufficiently. At first Kamada, who picked up a pass from Götze with the first contact so skilfully that he got rid of all the guards, was only centimeters away from the end (3rd minute); after that he was just offside, as the video assistant determined, otherwise his goal would have counted (10th).
But in the third attempt, the Japanese – and with him the majority of the 49,700 spectators in the arena – was finally able to celebrate: Kamada headed a combination that Götze had initiated and was refined by Kolo Muani with a skillful cross in the penalty area to make it 1-0 across the line. Gulacsi had no chance in the action, in which the people in front gave an extremely unsatisfactory picture due to negligent restraint (16th).
Rode has to go down
And it soon got even better for the Hessians, who gained field advantages through aggressive pressing. A shot from Rode from 14 meters was deflected by Willi Orban in such a way that Gulacsi was flat-footed and could only watch idly as Frankfurt made it 2-0 (22nd). After that, the Eintracht captain was – once again – prematurely over; Rode signaled complaints, and Glasner brought in Junior Ebimbe, who had been poached from Paris Saint-Germain, for the first time. The Frenchman fitted in without beating around the bush and entered the duels energetically, in which he mostly focused on defending up front.
Leipzig coach Domenico Tedesco also had to react early, contrary to plans: Daniel Olmo injured himself fighting for the ball with Sow and limped into the dressing room after repeated treatment; he was replaced by Emil Forsberg.
But even the Swede was unable to contribute anything worth mentioning from the 16th minute to better stage Timo Werner and Christopher Nkunku. The fast attacking duo rarely got past Tuta and Evan Ndicka – and when they did, Christopher Lenz and Kristijan Jakic were there.
Trapp parried against space
Going into the half-time break, Eintracht received thunderous applause for the best first half since the quarter-final triumph in the Europa League on Maundy Thursday in Barcelona.
With Dominik Szoboszlai replacing Kevin Kampl, Tedesco wanted to revive his team’s offensive spirit in the second period. As it turned out, that wasn’t supposed to work. Nkunku had an opportunity to improve the starting position, but his attempt after a corner kick went over Trapp and the crossbar (50th). The Frankfurt goalkeeper then quickly fended off David Raum, who tried it from a tight angle (52′).
Because referee Felix Brych consistently delivered a less than confident performance and his whistles were repeatedly used by everyone involved as an opportunity to protest with gestures, hectic became more and more frequent, which was not conducive to the handsomeness of the encounter.
In the end, Eintracht was able to generously overlook this blemish, because in the 67th minute they gave another taste of the class they had gained through Götze, which (like last week’s 4:3 in Bremen) proved to be groundbreaking: his powerful shot After a corner kick, Gulacsi was only able to slap it forward at Tuta’s feet, who was already throwing his arms in the air before his shot landed in the net.
With that, the Leipzig resistance was broken once and for all. Rafael Borré rounded off the Leipzig debacle with a penalty kick after Amadou Haidara had kicked Ansgar Knauff to make matters worse (83rd), and the supporters celebrated Eintracht even before the final whistle with chants that reflected the special qualities of their Favorites announced – and have not sounded as appropriate as on this Frankfurt late summer evening for a long time.