Bundesliga News

Europe: Champions League
FT
0 - 2
(0 - 1)
Frankfurt
Napoli
R. Kolo (58)
X K. Kvaratskhelia (36), V. Osimhen (40), G. Di Lorenzo (65)

Frankfurt falter to Napoli as Kolo Muani sees red

By Ultan Corcoran   @UltanCorcoran

The lively Deutsche Bank Park was the venue for another night in Eintracht Frankfurt’s Champions League odyssey. Their opponents, Napoli, came into the Round of 16 clash with a fifteen-point safety net atop the Serie A table.

Such was the challenge at stake, ‘Die Adler’ fans knew they had to play their part – A rapturous ambiance reached boiling point as the teams graced the field. Despite their best efforts, Frankfurt ultimately struggled to cope with their energetic Italian counterparts who ran out 2-0 victors on the night.

Randal Kolo Muani’s dismissal did little to aid their chances.
Article image
Photo: Sven Mandel, Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0
While Glasner’s side started brightly through the best efforts of Kolo Muani, Napoli clawed possession back in their favour as the 20th minute approached. Menacing corners from Kvaratskhelia and Zielinski placed Kevin Trapp under an aerial bombardment. Nevertheless, Frankfurt’s rear guard coped sufficiently.


Kevin Trapp demonstrated vital heroics in the 36th minute. A penalty given away by Buta, who unintentionally hooked Osimhen’s legs from beneath him, afforded Kvaratskhelia the chance from 12 yards. The Georgian sensation was foiled by Trapp, who tipped it around the left-hand upright. Inevitably a breakthrough arrived for the Neapolitans four minutes later – Kvaratskhelia made amends for his inaccurate spot kick by teeing up Osimhen who did the rest.

Shot stopper Trapp was critical to his side’s defensive efforts ten minutes after the interval. Another commanding save from the German denied Kvaratskhelia once more. Glasner’s side would soon face further adversity as his team was reduced to 10 men – The talismanic Kolo Muani trampling the upper ankle of Zambo Anguissa. Arbiter, Artur Soares Dias forced to brandish the red card. Napoli skipper Di Lorenzo would bag Napoli’s second on 65 minutes. Kvaratskhelia the creator again with a delightful backheel into the full-back’s path. The Italian rippled the net in nonchalant fashion.

This prompted Glasner to call upon Ansgar Knauff and Rafael Borre from the bench, as the Austrian tactician attempted to half the deficit. Knauff and Kamada almost combined to hit the net on 82 minutes. The Dortmund loanee found the Japanese international in the box, but Meret could extinguish the effort. Sadly, that was as good as it got for ‘Die Adler’. Chances of progression hang by a thread as a Frankfurt face a two-goal hill to climb and a Kolo Muani-sized hole to fill up top.


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