Manuel Veth –
Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich – Saturday, November 2, 14:30BST/15:30CEST – Commerzbank Arena, Frankfurt, Germany
For years the Waldstadion was a fortress for Eintracht Frankfurt when they hosted Bayern Munich. Legendary nights like the 6-0 victory in November 1975 when Bernd Nickels scored directly from a corner or the 5-1 extra-time victory over Bayern in the 1980 UEFA Cup semifinal are just two examples.
The recent history, however, has been more depressing for Frankfurt—the only exception is the 3-1 victory in the DFB Pokal final 18 months ago. Frankfurt are without a win in 16 Bundesliga games against the giants from Munich.
Eintracht Frankfurt, however, sense that there might be an opportunity to end the negative trend. “Bayern are always the favourite, in every game,” defender Martin Hinteregger said on Wednesday after the Eagles had eliminated FC St. Pauli from the DFB Pokal second round. “But at home, we have a lot of confidence.”
Hinteregger, Bas Dost and Timothy Chandler all suffered small injuries in the Cup fight against St.Pauil. Dost played through the pain midweek, the Austrian Hinteregger and the American Chandler, in the meantime, had to be taken off but the while the American remains a doubt for the match the Austrian wants to play the match.
Meanwhile, Bayern had a tough time against VfL Bochum in the DFB Pokal on Tuesday. Down a goal, after Alphonso Davies scored on his own net it was not until the last ten minutes that the Rekordmeister turned the game in its favour.
“We are talking about stuff but the boys are not putting it that way for now,” Kovač said in his weekly press conference. “It’s not about tactics, but about passing the ball from A to B. That way you can dominate.”
For Kovač his side has been lacking force and directness when playing against weaker opponents. “Bochum had a huge chance after 40 seconds, it’s like we are not there at the beginning of the games,” Kovač said. “We have to be wide awake. Frankfurt is a top team and we’ve done well against top teams lately. That’s what I expect.”
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From the outside the pressure is mounting against the head coach. Comments like that Bochum followed the match plan and that the squad is not good enough to play 200km/h football have been poorly perceived in the dressing room. In general, there seems to be a small rift between certain players in the squad and the head coach. Last year that rift was patched over by Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Uli Hoeneß, whether the two bosses will be willing to jump in a second time remains to be seen, however.
With that in mind, it will be a big game for Bayern against a very strong Frankfurt side. A game in which Frankfurt could finally overcome a negative series of 16 games without a win against the Rekordmeister.
Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich – Players to look out for:
Daichi Kamada #15 – Eintracht Frankfurt
Daichi Kamada could be the decisive player to end Frankfurt’s poor run against Bayern Munich. The Japanese player has been a revelation ever since returning from his loan spell in Belgium. A typical number 10 Kamada assisted three of Frankfurt’s last four goals. All three were from set-pieces, which could play a big role against Bayern on Saturday. “His shot is strong and precise, which is ideal for set-pieces and helps us a lot,” Frankfurt head coach Adi Hütter pointed out.
Philippe Coutinho #10 – Bayern Munich
Philippe Coutinho had a good start in Munich but his form has suffered somewhat in recent weeks. The Brazilian’s biggest problem appears to find common ground with Bayern’s fan favourite Thomas Müller. The two often occupy the same space and although Müller helped turn around the game against Bochum it would be surprising if the two start together. Overall, however, Coutinho is happy in the Bavarian capital and would like to stay at the club. But his performances have to improve for Bayern to trigger his buy-on clause.
Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich – Match Stats
- Frankfurt have been without a win in 16 games against Bayern.
- Frankfurt’s previous negative record is 17 games from 1983 to 1991, also against Bayern.
- Filip Kostić has lost every single one of his ten Bundesliga games against Bayern. The Eintracht Frankfurt winger has been without a goal or an assist in that stretch.
- Eintracht Frankfurt’s home record against Bayern: W18 D16 L14
Futbolgrad Network Prediction: Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich – 1-1
Frankfurt vs Bayern Munich – Lineups
Rönnow – Abraham, Hasebe, Hinteregger – da Costa, Fernandes, Rode, Kostić – Kamada – Dost, Paciência
Head Coach: Adi Hütter
Neuer – Alaba, Pavard, Boateng, Kimmich – Javi Martínez, Thiago – Gnabry, Coutinho, Coman – Lewandowski
Head Coach: Niko Kovač
Manuel Veth is the owner and Editor in Chief of the Futbolgrad Network. He also works as a freelance journalist and among others, contributes to Forbes.com and Pro Soccer USA. He holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States,” which is available HERE. Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently splits his time between Victoria, BC, and Munich, Germany. Follow Manuel on Twitter @ManuelVeth.