EINTRACHT FRANKFURT – MATCH REPORT VS. FC AUGSBURG (16/01/2022)

In a fairly open game, Eintracht will be disappointed not to take all 3 points away from Augsburg after spurning multiple good opportunities. Without talisman Filip Kostic, Eintracht instead had veteran Timothy Chandler in an unfamiliar LWB position, but they still managed to get some quality balls into the box, with the end product leaving something to be desired. Frankfurt attacked with a 3-4-2-1 formation, with the front 3 of Santos Borre, Lindstrom and Kamada being very fluid and dynamic, often forming a 2 up top – but also dropping deep into midfield.

Daichi Kamada opened the scoring on 22 minutes, following a lovely through ball from Santos Borre, who pounced on Niklas Dorschs’ poor pass. Augsburg were later denied a penalty by VAR, before Michael Gregoritsch volleyed home after wrong footing young keeper Diant Ramaj. The first half was a reasonably even affair, but second half was almost all Eintracht. Almamy Toure and Jesper Lindstrom both guilty of putting chances wide when perhaps they should have done better.

Ratings:

  • A1 – Very good, could play higher
  • A2 – Strong potential to play higher
  • B1 – Good, strong player at level
  • B2 – Potential to be strong player at level
  • C – Average for the level, re-watch
  • D – Below average in this match

Evan N’Dicka

Who Is Evan N'Dicka? Everything You Need to Know About the Coveted  Frankfurt Defender | 90min

Player profile:

  • Nationality: French
  • Age: 22
  • Date of birth: 20/08/1999
  • Current club: Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Career: AJ Auxerre, Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Position: Centre Back
  • Preferred foot: Left

Playing on the left hand side of Eintracht’s back 3, N’Dicka struck a commanding presence in their backline. Although only 22, N’Dicka has featured in over 110 games for Eintracht since 2018, and is very much one of the leaders in the side despite his young age. He controlled possession throughout and rarely looked uncomfortable out of possession.

N’Dicka completed the most passes out of the Eintracht team, and looked assured doing so. He kept good weight on his short passes and they were always in an optimum area for his teammate to receive. He is not the most progressive of passers, tending to pass to more creative teammates in order for his team to move up the pitch. This also meant he was very safe in his possession, rarely making risky passes and instead passing back to the goalkeeper to restart play. Although his short passing along the ground was excellent, N’Dicka struggled more with his long passing, rarely hitting the desired target. It seems sensible that he left his teammates to make these long balls rather than him. He was able and willing to carry the ball forwards, and never looked rushed dribbling. Each run was composed and he knew his limits, never over running the ball and he always kept possession. His first touch was good throughout, and he was pretty capable off of his weaker right foot in possession – although used his left where possible.

Defensively and physically is where N’Dicka proved to be excellent during the game. He is a very proactive defender in the Eintracht system, often stepping up extremely high and wide to engage the Augsburg right winger Vargas. He showed good speed and acceleration of the mark to close down space, where he tried to limit Vargas’ option of going wide, forcing a sideways or backwards pass. He is immensely strong in the tackle, using his large frame, scrappy nature and aggression to often come out on top in defensive duels. If he fails to stop the ball progressing after stepping up out of the line, he has great pace of the mark and a good top speed in order to recover ground on the attacker. He is similarly excellent in the air. Standing at over 6’3″ / 190cm, N’Dicka was dominant off long and high balls, always winning the duel. He had a good leap that allowed him to win the ball, with good power on the header to clear away or knock to a teammate. He is a similar threat from dead ball situations in attack. In certain situations he struggled to cope with the agility of an attacker, especially Vargas, but he could often recover with his pace and stick out a long leg to block a cross or a shot, which was impressive.

Rating – A1

N’Dicka is a seriously impressive defender, shows composure and calm far beyond his years, often looking like a mature centre back. Alongside being left footed, he has all the key attributes to develop into a top centre back. I would anticipate a host of top European clubs could be after him in the summer if his strong form continues

Jesper Lindstrøm

Who is Jesper Lindstrom, Eintracht Frankfurt's rookie Denmark  international? | Bundesliga

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 21
  • Date of birth: 29/02/2000
  • Current club: Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Career: Brøndby IF, Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Position: Attacking Midfielder
  • Secondary position: Striker, Left Wing, Right Wing
  • Preferred foot: Right

Lindstrom played a very fluid role for Frankfurt throughout this game. Starting off with Kamada as a 2 behind Santos Borre up front, he often moved forward to become a striker, or dropped deeper to form a midfield 3. Both Kamada and Lindstrom alternated in the responsibility, although Kamada tended to drop deeper more and Lindstrom tended to push forward more. Lindstrom had a solid game, and perhaps should have even scored, dragging the ball wide of the target in a 1v1 situation.

His work rate and determination was what stuck out the most with Lindstrom. He was constantly energetic throughout the match, often running in behind to create a wider option, or dropping much deeper to help in build up play. If he lost the ball or a teammate lost the ball that he could realistically counter press, he did so with great desire. Although not the strongest perhaps, with his lanky frame, he isn’t afraid to get stuck into challenges both offensive and defensive in nature, and shows real grit in the fight. His endurance in keeping these high work rate levels throughout the 90 was equally impressive. His work rate in attack when off the ball is equally impressive. He makes very intelligent runs in behind the defence, especially on the right hand side of the pitch, where he then looks to cross or fashion a shooting opportunity. He is also unselfish in making runs that free up space for another runner in a better position.

On the ball Lindstrom was decent. He was a bit inconsistent with his first touch – made some wonderful controls from lofted balls and through passes, then also mis controlled some balls he perhaps should have kept under control. If he got the ball in an optimal position to carry however, he was exceptional at doing so. His long strides and great pace and acceleration allowed him to really prove a threat to defenders. Lindstrom loved to pick up the ball in the right half space, attacking the gap between Augsburg’s centre back and left back, forcing them into a decision. He is not the most aesthetically pleasing to watch dribble, perhaps lacking some agility that top dribblers have, but he was nevertheless a constant threat when dribbling.

Passing wise, he was slightly less of an influence. He contributed to early phases of build up with simple passes, which he does so quite often and is excellent in identifying where he can create a +1 in build up. He never looked for a more expansive ball, for example over the top and in behind, or a long switch ball. Although not an issue in early build up, he needs to be better at finding a pass/cross in the final third – he often struggle to find a quality ball in from a good position, or looked to shoot instead. Shooting wise he was constantly eager to attempt shots on goal, especially from outside the box. But, similar to his passing in the final third, he needs to be more composed with his finish. He strikes the ball with good technique and power, but often rushes it, with the shot going wide or straight at the keeper.

Rating – A2

Jesper is a real talent, he is excellent physically and presents a real threat carrying the ball. If he can be a bit more composed inside the box, he would be an even better talent. It is worth remembering that it is only his first season in a top 5 league. He has many quality attributes, and if he can become more productive in his creative and finishing outputs, he can become a top, top player.

Tuta

Frankfurt would like to extend with Tuta - Ruetir

Player profile:

  • Nationality: Brazilian
  • Age: 22
  • Date of birth: 04/07/1999
  • Current club: Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Career: Sao Paulo, Eintracht Frankfurt, KV Kortrijk (loan), Eintracht Frankfurt
  • Position: Centre Back
  • Secondary position: Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Playing to the right of the veteran Makoto Hasebe, Tuta was arguably the major player in Eintracht’s early build up phases. His best attribute throughout the game was his great passing range. Although Hasebe and N’Dicka were capable of progressing the ball over shorter distances, Tuta showed a different class in making accurate, long passes throughout the game. He was capable of playing balls in behind to Chandler on the left hand side of the pitch, and also directly down to Lindstrom on the right hand side. He did so with excellent accuracy throughout. Not only was he technically sound in the passing area but he also was a very competent dribbler, and often carried past the first line of pressure with ease, where he could then use his passing range and vision to progress the ball further. He formed a strong partnership with Almamy Toure at right wing back, and they often rotated positions, with Tuta showing capability of playing higher up the pitch, with Toure equally sound in a more defensive position.

Defensively Tuta is decent. Not the most aggressive in the tackle and is more passive rather than proactive, but he is still good enough to time his challenges well in a 1v1 situation. His positioning is good, and was rarely threatened in behind, making good decisions on when to cover the space or to engage a ball carrier. Where Tuta struggles a bit more is in the physical side of defending. He is not the tallest, and was easily beaten in aerial duels during the game – Michael Gregoritsch in the Augsburg attack was much taller than him and much cleverer in the air, and Tuta did struggle to deal with it. This allowed Gregoritsch to take the ball down and give Augsburg an advantageous attacking position. Alongside his sub par aerial ability, Tuta doesn’t have the most muscular frame, and when engaged with more physical forward players he did struggle at times. Perhaps against a team stronger than Augsburg then Tuta would have struggled a lot more.

Rating – B1

Tuta is a good player for Bundesliga level, and if he can improve himself physically that would make a huge difference in his defensive capabilities, especially against target men type players. I would like to see him in a slightly different position, perhaps in a back 4 at right -back where strength and aerial ability are slightly less needed, and he can still use his excellent passing game, and perhaps be given more freedom to attack down the sides. Having said that, I do think the right of a back 3 is the best place to play him as a centre back, I wouldn’t play him as a CB in a back 4.

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