Union Berlin claimed a much deserved 2-1 win at Eintracht Frankfurt on Monday, largely thanks to the predatory instincts of top scorer Sebastian Andersson.
Eintracht Frankfurt 1-2 Union Berlin
Goals: 0-1 Andersson (48'), 0-2 N'Dicka (o.g. 67'), 1-2 Hübner (o.g. 79')
Fresh from their 4-1 dismissal of Austrian side Red Bull Salzburg in the first leg of their Europa League last-32 tie, red-hot Frankfurt welcomed Union Berlin to the financial capital on Monday night - looking to make it four wins out of five in all competitions. But Union have proven time and again this season that they are no pushovers and the visitors had themselves won two of their last four league matches. The result was an even first half, with neither side giving the other an inch as a tense opening 45 minutes ended without any chances of real note at either end of the pitch. USA international Timothy Chandler came closest to opening the scoring on the half hour mark but his deflected effort lobbed over Rafal Gikiewicz's crossbar, while Union played with adventure but without threatening the home side's goal.
In contrast, the second half immediately burst into life as Cristopher Lenz pounced on confusion in the Frankfurt defence before squaring to Andersson to tap into an empty net for one of the easiest of his nine Bundesliga goals this season. Die Adler went in search of an instant reply, probing the visitors' defence but found it difficult to break down a well disciplined and extremely stubborn Union defence. Goncalo Paciencia twice went close either side of the hour mark but his two headed efforts couldn't quite find the target. Die Eisernen rammed home their advantage shortly after as Andersson showed his predatory skills once again, bundling the ball home via Evan N'Dicka's left leg. Frankfurt finally found a breakthrough with 10 minutes to go, substitute Andre Silva's sublime backheel finding the back of the net courtesy of Florian Hübner's unintentional intervention. Gikiewicz would go on to make a fine late double save to deny Frankfurt an equaliser, ensuring his side left the Commerbank-Arena with all three points.
- The Eagles had won each of their last two Bundesliga home games by an aggregate score of 7-0 but defeat here means the club hasn't recorded three wins in a row at home without conceding in the league since autumn 2000.
- Frankfurt and Union have met nine times in competitive fixtures and this was the first time that the promoted capital club has picked up a victory.
- Japan midfielder Daichi Kamada scored the first hat-trick of his career in the win over Salzburg but is still yet to score a Bundesliga goal after 18 appearances.
- Union won their last away game 2-0 in Bremen and this is the first time that the Berliners have collected points from two away games in a row all season.
- This was just their third away win in 2019/20 and prior to kick-off, only Frankfurt (seven points) had a worse record away from home than Union (eight), who now have a better points tally on their travels (11) than five other clubs - SGE included.
- Union captain Christopher Trimmel missed his first game of the season through suspension.
Watch: Andersson: “It’s a very good feeling”
Frankfurt: Trapp - Durm (Silva 66'), Abraham (c), Hinteregger, N'Dicka (Rode 71') - Chandler, Hasebe, Kohr, Kostic - Kamada - Paciencia
Unused subs: Rönnow, De Guzman, Sow, Gacinovic, Toure, Cetin, Cavar
Out: Fernandes (hip), Russ (Achilles tendon), Torro (knee), Da Costa (toe), Dost (groin), Ilsanker (hip)
Coach: Adi Hütter
Union: Gikiewicz - Friedrich, Hübner, Subotic - Ryerson, Gentner (Prömel 77'), Andrich, Lenz - Malli (Ingvartsen 63'), Bülter (Kroos 90') - Andersson
Unused subs: Nicolas, Polter, Ujah, Reichel, Becker, Parensen
Out: Gogia (match fitness), Mees (thigh), Trimmel (suspended)
Coach: Urs Fischer