One more step to Seville – Sport

The dream of the final in the Europa League is within reach for Eintracht Frankfurt after another strong performance. The Bundesliga soccer club won the first leg of the semi-finals at West Ham United 2-1 (1-1) and can make the trip to the final on May 18 in Seville next Thursday perfect in front of their home crowd. Ansgar Knauff put the Hessians, who are still unbeaten in the current competition, ahead in the first minute in front of 60,000 spectators in London, which Michail Antonio (21st) equalized for seventh in the English Premier League. After the change, Daichi Kamada (54th) scored for the guest victory.

As always in Europe, coach Oliver Glasner’s team acted with heart and passion and thus earned the brilliant starting position for the second leg. Then, for the first time since triumphing in the UEFA Cup 42 years ago, Eintracht will be in the final of an international club competition. League rival RB Leipzig could wait there. “We want to show our Eintracht Frankfurt Europa League face. That’s our approach. That’s why I’m happy and have complete confidence in the squad,” Glasner announced on the RTL microphone before kick-off. No sooner said than done: After just 50 seconds, assist provider Rafael Borré and goal scorer Knauff used the collective deep sleep of the West Ham defense. Knauff headed in unchallenged at the far post and scored the fastest Eintracht goal in the Europa League so far. The 3,000 Frankfurt fans, mostly dressed in white, could then be heard loudly. Unlike in Barcelona, ​​however, the allocated ticket contingent was valid this time, the “eagle invasion” announced by board spokesman Axel Hellmann did not materialize, at least in the stadium. More than 25,000 Eintracht supporters made it to the Camp Nou. And the football professionals from London defended themselves very differently than Barça two weeks ago. After a weak first quarter of an hour, West Ham increased significantly and took control of the game. First, winger Jarrod Bowen (14th) failed at the post and Kevin Trapp after a worthwhile play, but the deserved equalizer followed shortly afterwards: Striker Antonio was able to shoot freely at the second post after a rehearsed standard variation. The duel was not only the football fight announced by Glasner, but also worth seeing in terms of play.

Driven by the great backdrop in the Olympic Stadium, the hosts played for a second goal before the break, but Eintracht had the best chance before the change: Knauff was put in the spotlight again, but his shot from the turn (39th) from around ten meters was successful narrowly missed Alphonse Aréola’s goal. The second half also started perfectly for the Hessians: Aréola was able to fend off a low flick from Djibril Sow, but Kamada dusted off completely freely to take the lead again. The English defensive had again acted much too passively and thus deprived themselves of the reward for the previously decent performance.

As in the first half, West Ham then increased the pressure. Said Benrahma’s powerful attempt from distance (68′) touched the crossbar, Trapp would have had no chance. The hosts continued to attack happily and occasionally made it into the penalty area, but the final consequence was missing. On the other side, Kamada (79th) could have even increased, but the deflected shot landed on the post. Bowen’s spectacular overhead kick in added time smacked the bar.

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