Eintracht Frankfurt’s Europa League winners have been slowed down after their euphoric months of international football. The Hessians lost 0:2 (0:1) to Real Madrid in the final of the European Supercup on Wednesday evening in Helsinki and missed another title coup almost three months after the spectacular triumph in Seville.
Ex-Bayern professional David Alaba (37th minute) and Karim Benzema (65th) scored the goals for the Champions League winner in front of around 31,000 spectators in the Olympic Stadium.
Cheered on by more than 10,000 of their own fans and weakened by the cancellation of Filip Kostic, who was willing to change, Eintracht put up a brave fight, but had to admit defeat to the ripped-off title hamsters around Toni Kroos.
FC Bayern, who lifted the trophy in 2013 and 2020, remains the only German winner of UEFA’s coronation game. With their fifth Supercup title, Real catches up with the two record holders FC Barcelona and AC Milan.
As a “reward” for the big Europa League evening in Spain, coach Oliver Glasner had almost the same starting XI as in May. Christopher Lenz began for Kostic, who was absent due to his transfer negotiations.
Against the world-class selection around ex-national player Kroos in their first competitive game of the new season, Eintracht repeatedly felt their way out of their own half. The eye-catching Daichi Kamada forced Real goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois to save in the 14th minute.
However, Real’s response was just as tough: After an attack via Federico Valverde and Benzema, Vinícius Júnior came to an end, Frankfurt’s Tuta saved the already beaten Kevin Trapp in front of the line (17th).
“Proving yourself again and again” is the big task, said sporting director Markus Krösche. It went terribly wrong in the 6-1 draw against FC Bayern on Friday, but Eintracht improved in Helsinki.
Ansgar Knauff tested Courtois again from an acute angle (24th), on the defensive, the Hessians were able to limit the sphere of action of Kroos and the former world footballer Luka Modric, at least temporarily.
Vinícius Júnior showed how quickly it could become dangerous with his shot, which Trapp was able to parry (37th). In the following corner, however, Alaba used the brief disorder in the Frankfurt defense to score. Then it became very difficult for Eintracht.
Madrid’s star coach Carlo Ancelotti initially played the same eleven as in the triumph in the premier class against Liverpool. New signing Antonio Rüdiger, Hansi Flick’s defense chief in the German national team, sat on the bench until just before the end and saw Real’s next good chance just before the break. After Kroos crossed in from the right, Benzema finished, but the shot from the world footballer candidate went just wide of the Frankfurt goal (41st).
At the beginning of the second half, Eintracht tried to speed towards the Real goal. But Ancelotti’s star ensemble showed the whole routine of several big games on the European stage. The danger of running into a counterattack was huge for the Bundesliga club. Trapp saved against Vinícius Júnior (55th).
Glasner reacted and brought on Randal Kolo Muani for Jesper Lindström and Mario Götze for Sebastian Rode (59′). Shortly thereafter, Real’s Casemiro hit the bar (61′), before Benzema scored the second goal after assisting Vinícius Júnior. It was the decision. (dpa)