Jonas Hofmann scored one and assisted another as Borussia Mönchengladbach showed future head coach Adi Hütter what they are capable of with a big win over UEFA Champions League-chasing Eintracht Frankfurt.
Frankfurt head coach Adi Hütter was taking in his soon-to-be new surroundings on Saturday, with the tactician agreeing to take over at Gladbach at the end of the season. The Foals showed their future coach what they are made of as they took the lead on just 10 minutes. Hofmann's corner was met by an unmarked Matthias Ginter, and the Gladbach captain powered home a header at the near post. Frankfurt, still chasing a maiden UEFA Champions League berth, could have drawn level five minutes later, but Luka Jovic headed wide from Filip Kostic's cross. Marcus Thuram then went close with a header and Alassane Plea dragged a shot narrowly wide from range, as the Foals continued to enjoy the better chances. Stefan Ilsanker crashed a header off the crossbar from Daichi Kamada's corner at the other end, with Gladbach keeper Tobias Sippel getting a crucial hand to it along the way. The home side had two appeals for penalties turned away before the break, with referee Deniz Aytekin consulting the VAR, but they still took a deserved lead in at half-time.
Kostic and Jovic combined again after the restart, but the latter couldn't turn his compatriot's free-kick on target with his second headed chance of the game. Minutes later, the Foals should have doubled their lead as Plea slipped through to Thuram, who dinked the ball over Kevin Trapp but also wide of the mark. The Frenchman had another chance on the hour mark, but this time his close-range shot was deflected over by Djibril Sow. The home side didn’t have to wait much longer though, finally getting their second goal from the resulting corner. The ball was cleared back to the taker, Hofmann, and his low strike from 12 yards out squeezed under Trapp for 2-0. A third goal followed just seven minutes later as Ginter met Hofmann's corner once again, this time finding the crossbar. Luckily, Ramy Bensebaini was on hand to nod in the rebound from six yards out, enjoying a late birthday present the day after turning 26. The Eagles showed signs of life towards the end, with Amin Younes forcing a strong save from Sippel and Aymen Barkok striking the post, but it was Gladbach who put the cherry on the cake in added time. Patrick Herrmann found Hannes Wolf, who slotted in a fourth to complete a perfect afternoon for the Foals.
- Hofmann's goal was his sixth of the season, making this the most prolific Bundesliga campaign of his career.
- Ginter scored his second goal of the campaign. Both have been headers from corners taken by Hofmann.
- Gladbach have won all six of their games in which Bensebaini has scored.
- The Foals scored from a set piece for the 20th time this season - a league-best. The only time they've managed more goals from dead-ball situations in a single campaign was back in 1993/94 (22).
- Eintracht failed to score in the Bundesliga for the first time in 24 matches. Only twice before - in the 1970s - had the club strung together a longer scoring run.
Watch: Ginter: "Really pleased with our set-pieces today"
Gladbach: Sippel - Lainer, Ginter (c), Elvedi, Bensebaini (Wendt 90') - Zakaria (Reitz 90'), Neuhaus - Lazaro (Wolf 90'), Plea, Hofmann (Herrmann 82') - Thuram (Embolo 78')
Unused subs: Grün, Beyer, Traore, Jantschke
Out: Kramer (suspended), Sommer (suspended), Stindl (muscular)
Coach: Marco Rose
Frankfurt: Trapp - Tuta, Ilsanker (Hasebe 65'), N'Dicka - Durm (Younes 65'), Sow, Rode (c) (Chandler 65'), Kostic - Kamada (Barkok 84') - Silva, Jovic
Unused subs: Schübert, Bördner, Hrustic, Zuber, Willems
Out: Ache (hamstring), Hinteregger (thigh), Toure (pelvis)
Coach: Adi Hütter
Watch: Hütter: "I'm 100 per cent focused on Eintracht Frankfurt"