Eintracht lose to Flamengo
Eintracht Frankfurt slipped to a 1-0 defeat to Brazilian side Flamengo on Saturday, meaning the Eagles were unable to win the Florida Cup.
Adi Hütter's charges were forced to play with ten men for 65 minutes following captain David Abraham's early sending off, and fell behind to Jean Lucas's goal shortly before the interval. The result means the Brazilians win the tournament with five points from two matches, ahead of Dutch side Ajax, who finished as runners-up on four points following their 4-2 victory over Sao Paulo in Orlando earlier in the day. Eintracht ended up in third with three points.
Personnel: Paciencia returns
Hütter began with his customary 3-5-2 formation with Danny Da Costa and Filip Kostic playing out wide, but had to mix things up after 25 minutes when Abraham was sent off. That meant Makoto Hasebe and Simon Falette reshuffled to fill the two centre-back berths until half-time, at which point the Eagles head coach changed his entire team and went with a 3-5-1 system for the second 45 minutes.
Striker Goncalo Paciencia, who last featured in an Eintracht squad at the start of September, replaced Branimir Hrgota in the 76th minute to make his comeback from a long-term injury, a move that led to Jetro Willems shifting out to the right flank.
First-half: Fast paced affair
Both teams began energetically, each looking to get forward quickly whenever they got the ball. Eintracht did not change tactics after Abraham's expulsion and competed well, even putting together some eye-catching build-up play, albeit without seriously troubling the Flamengo defence. By way of contrast, the Brazilians twice went through on goal only to be denied by last-ditch tackles, first from Abraham on Jean Lucas in the fourth minute, before Kostic stopped Dourado on the half-hour mark.
Ante Rebic had the best chance for the Eagles, but shot over from the edge of the box after collecting a pass from Luka Jovic and skipping past his marker. When the deadlock was finally broken, it was somewhat fortunate for Flamengo, as Jean Lucas' scuffed shot from Rodinei's pass trickled into the far corner.
Second half: Eintracht solid
After the interval Hütter's charges were forced more onto the back foot, even if most of the action was concentrated in midfield. Eintracht remained compact at the back and rarely allowed Flamengo a sight of goal, with the Brazilians lacking a cutting edge up front to finish off some promising moves, while Jan Zimmermann made a couple of good saves.
Hütter: "I'm very satisfied overall"
Speaking after the final whistle, Hütter gave his thoughts on the game: "Obviously the competitive nature of the game dropped a bit after 25 minutes. We tried everything we could not to lose. Maybe we dropped a bit too deep in the second half, but overall I'm very satisfied with the training camp and with the two top-quality friendlies we played."
SGE line-up (first half): Trapp - Abraham, Hasebe, Falette - Da Costa, Kostic - de Guzman, Rode, Stendera - Rebic, Jovic.
SGE line-up (second half): Zimmermann – Russ, Salcedo, Ndicka – Hrgota (Paciencia 76'), Tawatha – Fernandes, Fabián, Willems – Haller.
0-1 Jean Lucas (40')