Eintracht Frankfurt 0-3 Bayern Munich: Report, Ratings & Reaction as
Bayern Munich remained within six points of league leaders and rivals Borussia Dortmund after they defeated Eintracht Frankfurt 0-3, in their final league match of the calendar year, at the Commerzbank-Arena on Saturday evening.
An error from Evan N’Dicka eventually allowed Franck Ribéry to open the scoring for the Bavarians in the 35th minute, before the Frenchman’s scuffed-strike doubled the lead in the 79th minute.
Rafinha added a late third in the 89th minute as Die Roten made it five Bundesliga wins from five.
Key Talking Point
Frankfurt initially started in the ascendancy, utilising the width provided by their two wing-backs, Danny da Costa and Filip Kostić, who were causing Bayern several issues on on the break in the early stages.
Yet, despite the hosts’ bright start, they were undone by a lapse in concentration from Evan N’Dicka, which ultimately saw their opponents take the lead.
The hosts’ front two of Luka Jović and Sébastien Haller had combined on a few occasions in the first-half and their partnership up front had led to a few opportunities, but they were relatively quiet in the second period and were wasteful when they did got the chance, as their opponents capitalised at the other end.
Starting XI: Trapp (6*); Salcedo (5), Falette (5), N’Dicka (5); Da Costa (6), Gaćinović (5), Fernandes (5), Willems (5), Kostić (6); Haller (5), Jović (5).
Substitutes: Müller (N/A), De Guzmán (5)
STAR MAN – Kevin Trapp was impressive for the home side, despite the defeat. He pulled off some magnificent saves in the first-half, most notably a terrific double save from Martínez and Müller, following a corner.
He couldn’t do much for the first two Bayern goals and despite being caught-out by Rafinha’s cross, which found the back of the net, he prevented the scoreline from getting worse, although it flattered Bayern.
WORST PLAYER – N’Dicka’s error seemed to have outdone all of Frankfurt’s impressive display in the first-half. From a position of control, his mistake cost the side, as they fell behind. He never fully recovered in the game, he was caught out of position a few times and didn’t get tight enough to his opponents in the second-half.
Key Talking Point
The Bavarians may have seen the lion’s share of possession, but they didn’t use the ball as well as their opponents, who looked relatively comfortable against their illustrious opponents for the most part of the first period.
Bayern did look a danger from set-pieces, with Trapp producing heroics to deny Javi Martínez and Thomas Müller. However, it took an error from N’Dicka to put Die Roten in front and the away side were on top from that moment onwards, with Müller rattling the bar, which could have potentially wrapped up the three points on the stroke of half-time.
The away side took advantage of their opponents’ defensive positioning and added to their tally with Ribéry finding the net, before Rafinha’s mis-hit cross catching-out Trapp.
Starting XI: Neuer (5); Rafinha (7), Süle (5), Boateng (5), Alaba (6); Kimmich (6), Martínez (5); Müller (6), Thiago (6), Ribéry (8*); Lewandowski (6).
Substitutes: Coman (N/A), Shabani (N/A), Wagner (N/A).
STAR MAN – Ribéry’s brace earns him the accolade. He had picked up a knock earlier in the first-half, but managed to find the net, showing great awareness and instincts to get onto the end of a square-pass by Lewandowski. Although the ball may have ricocheted into his path, the Frenchman managed to find the net and make it two, albeit with a mis-hit effort.
WORST PLAYER – Jérôme Boateng was a last-minute starter in the match. He didn’t look at his sharpest best, misplacing his passes and appearing to react to the danger, slightly later than usual. He did well to deputise in Mats Hummels absence, however.
Following the Christmas period, Frankfurt will participate in the mid-season friendly tournament The Florida Cup, where the side will come up against Brazilian sides São Paulo and Flamengo. They return to league action at home against Freiburg, currently 11th.
Meanwhile, Bayern travel to 14th-placed Fortuna Düsseldorf for a friendly, before a trip to seventh-placed Hoffenheim when the Bundesliga resumes.