As soon as the season is over, Eintracht Frankfurt steps on the gas pedal when it comes to squad planning. Some positions are already well filled, further additions are imminent. But there are also hardship cases and construction sites.
After the season is before the season: Shortly before the well-deserved vacation for everyone involved, Eintracht Frankfurt set some course for the future at the beginning of the week and rearranged the squad. Some players were dismissed, others got new contracts, others are still to come or go. An inventory.
The position between the posts is already clear. Leading player and final hero Kevin Trapp is in the form of his life and is going into the coming season as the crystal clear number one. The only unresolved question: Will Trapp also be in goal for the DFB team at the World Cup, or is it “only” enough for number two under national coach Hansi Flick? The opinion of the Frankfurt fans, which could be clearly heard at the reception in the Römer, is clear: “New on the bench.”
This is exactly where either Diant Ramaj or Jens Grahl will sit at Eintracht next season. The contract with young goalkeeper Ramaj was extended on Tuesday until 2027, the future belongs to him. Grahl, whose contract runs until 2024, will keep quiet and be there when needed.
Significantly larger changes are announced in the defense. It is clear that temporary defense chief Tuta, who extended his contract shortly before the Europa League final until 2026, will continue to wear the Frankfurt jersey in the future and is set as a central defender. Jerome Onguene, who comes from Salzburg, or Hrvoje Smolcic, who is said to come from Rijeka, could then defend at his side. The transfer of the 21-year-old Croatian has not yet been officially announced, but the move is just as certain as the signing of right-back Aurelio Buta from Antwerp.
“It’s possible,” commented sporting director Markus Krösche on the two upcoming transfers, which will bring more quality and flexibility to Eintracht. The introduction to a back four planned by trainer Oliver Glasner last year would then also be possible. In this case, left-back Christopher Lenz could form the counterpart to Buta. But Ridvan Yilmaz from Besiktas Istanbul is also a good candidate for the job.
On the other hand, it is unclear how things will continue with Martin Hinteregger and Evan N’Dicka. On the sidelines of the title celebrations, the crowd’s favorite Hinteregger underlined that he would like to stay in Frankfurt. Should an offer come for the Austrian, the signs are goodbye. “Sometimes new, young players come. That’s how it is in football,” Hinteregger told hr-sport. N’Dicka, who still has a contract until 2023, is meanwhile on the list of top clubs and could bring the Hessians income of over 20 million euros. The fact that he goes on a free transfer in the coming year should be avoided at all costs.
Almamy Touré, who proved his worth especially in the Europa League, should stay. Makoto Hasebe is still a year as a backup, and Timothy Chandler is also going into another season. Erik Durm has no perspective, but currently no other club. Danny da Costa moves to Mainz.
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Filip Kostic’s future is and will remain exciting. The Serb, who really wanted to go to Lazio Rome and the supposedly larger football stage last summer, could now also play in the Frankfurt Champions League. Coach Glasner is optimistic the Seville final won’t be Kostic’s last game for Eintracht. Since Kostic’s contract only runs for one year, everything is open. Another candidate for change is Daichi Kamada. The Japanese is also only tied to the Hessians until 2023. The motto: extend or replace.
What is certain is that Ansgar Knauff WILL twirl on the right flank in the coming season as well. Jesper Lindström has a long-term commitment anyway, and Sebastian Rode, Kristijan Jakic and Djibril Sow are also set. In the case of Milan loan Jens Petter Hauge, who was not necessarily convincing, a clause applies. Eintracht will buy the Norwegian, there is a transfer fee of over ten million euros. So far, he has failed to prove that Hauge is really worth it.
Faride Alidou from Hamburger SV is the new signing. However, since the 20-year-old has never played in the Bundesliga and has not always been a seed at HSV, he will need time. Ajdin Hrustic’s future is open. Stefan Ilsanker (no new club so far) and Aymen Barkok (Mainz) have already said goodbye.
In midfield, most of the work still has to be done by the squad planners. Much depends on the whereabouts of Kostic and Kamada. The additional income from the premier class, which should be invested sparingly, would definitely be best invested in midfield.
Rafael Borré is already firmly listed in the Frankfurt history books after just one season, and in the coming season he will be rewarded with the long-awaited support in the top striker. Randal Kolo Muani arrives from Nantes on a free transfer and with all sorts of advance praise. With Sebastian Polter, a real striker is also expected in Frankfurt shortly. It is also clear that young hope Ali Akman will return to Eintracht after a decent season in Nijmegen and start a new attempt. It remains to be seen whether all this will be enough for the Champions League.
Joker and mood cannon Goncalo Paciencia, who has his strengths above all off the pitch, and Ragnar Ache could leave Eintracht. Bad investment Sam Lammers has already done that.
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