Eagles lose out in six-goal thriller
Despite battling hard, especially in the second half, Eintracht Frankfurt lost 4-2 to a lively Borussia Mönchengladbach on Sunday.
In a gripping encounter at Borussia-Park, goals from Danny da Costa and Martin Hinteregger proved insufficient for the Eagles, who will likely rue the chances they spurned while just 2-1 down.
Personnel: Sole adjustment
Head coach Adi Hütter made just one change to the side that overcame Royal Standard Club de Liège in the UEFA Europa League, bringing in Gelson Fernandes to replace the injured Mijat Gacinovic. With Bas Dost and Andre Silva also sidelined, Goncalo Paciencia was again the only recognised striker in the starting XI, although he was ably supported by Daichi Kamada. At just over 28 years of age, this was SGE’s oldest line-up of the season.
First half: Double blow
The Eagles started well, defending stoutly and breaking swiftly, and they created an excellent chance for Kamada in the ninth minute, but the Japanese livewire could not make contact with Filip Kostic’s tempting cross. Borussia began to dominate possession, and they came close to taking the lead in the 20th minute, but Fernandes was perfectly positioned to clear Denis Zakaria’s goal-bound effort off the line. It was a sign of things to come for the Foals, who went ahead shortly afterwards, an unmarked Marcus Thuram slotting home Breel Embolo’s cross from the right. Just as it appeared that Eintracht had weathered the storm and would only have a one-goal deficit to chase in the second period, the home side doubled their advantage, Oscar Wendt pouncing to slam the ball past Frederik Rönnow on the stroke of half-time.
Second half: Back in it
Eintracht upped the intensity after the break, as they went in search of a way back into the match. That lifeline came in the 59th minute, when Kamada brilliantly controlled Kostic’s deep cross, dribbled to the byline and fed Da Costa, who tapped the ball into the net. There then followed a period of acute Eagles pressure, during which Kamada in particular had Yann Sommer scrambling on several occasions. When it seemed like an equaliser was inevitable, though, Gladbach restored their two-goal lead through Nico Elvedi’s looping header. The visitors hit back immediately when Hinteregger powered home a header of his own from Kamada’s corner to potentially set up a grandstand finish. Such a finale did not materialise in the end, as a few minutes later Borussia counter-attacked through Lars Stindl, who squared the ball for Zakaria, and this time the Swiss international made no mistake.
Summary: Unfortunate outcome
In spite of the tough loss and the goals conceded, Hütter will likely be pleased with the way in which his charges refused to give up when all seemed lost; in fact, on another day, the Eagles might even have taken something from the match.
Rönnow – Abraham (c), Hinteregger, Hasebe – Rode (Kohr 46’), Da Costa, Fernandes (Joveljic 83’), Kostic (Chandler 79’), Sow – Kamada, Paciencia
1-0 Thuram (28’)
2-0 Wendt (45+2’)
2-1 Da Costa (59’)
3-1 Elvedi (74’)
3-2 (Hinteregger 79’)
4-2 (Zakaria 85’)
28'Borussia MönchengladbachGoalMarcus Thuram
31'Borussia MönchengladbachYellow cardFlorian Neuhaus
35'Borussia MönchengladbachSubstitutionLars Stindl for Breel Embolo
47'Borussia MönchengladbachGoalOscar Wendt
45'Borussia MönchengladbachSubstitutionLouis Beyer for Tony JantschkeEintracht FrankfurtSubstitutionDominik Kohr for Sebastian Rode
59'Eintracht FrankfurtGoalDanny Da Costa
74'Eintracht FrankfurtYellow cardDavid Abraham
75'Borussia MönchengladbachGoalNico Elvedi
79'Eintracht FrankfurtSubstitutionTimothy Chandler for Filip KosticGoalMartin Hinteregger
82'Borussia MönchengladbachSubstitutionJonas Hofmann for Patrick Herrmann
83'Eintracht FrankfurtSubstitutionDejan Joveljic for Gelson Fernandes
85'Borussia MönchengladbachGoalDenis Zakaria