Éric Dina Ebimbe is the toast of Frankfurt after scoring twice in Eintracht's stunning 5-1 win over Bayern Munich on Bundesliga Matchday 14.
bundesliga.com: What were the coach's tactical instructions before the Bayern game?
Dina Ebimbe: "I think the coach knew Bayern very well. He had asked us to focus on our defensive game, especially on the flanks, in order to keep their wingers away from the ball and from attacking our penalty area. We did that very well. Our game plan was to prevent them from attacking from out wide, and it worked our quite well."
bundesliga.com: How did you feel after your second goal against Bayern?
Dina Ebimbe: "It was a great moment for me, I will never forget it. Bayern were getting back into the game, but scoring that fourth goal really put a stop to it. That was truly wonderful and made me so happy."
bundesliga.com: Explain how your goal to make it 2-0 came about...
Dina Ebimbe: "We started a counter-attack, and I knew there would be enough space to penetrate their defence. Farès [Chaïbi] saw me, passed me the ball, and once I had it, I didn’t hesitate. The ball went in and we were very happy."
bundesliga.com: How did the team feel when the full-time whistle went?
Dina Ebimbe: "We felt great. We were going through a difficult phase, our performances were being mocked, and people were writing that Bayern were going to badly beat us. We didn’t much like that, which fired us up for the game. Nothing against Bayern, but in football you never know what can happen. Stay humble, and respect all opponents... 5-1 was our answer to those who were saying that we would lose 4-0."
Watch: How Frankfurt beat Bayern
bundesliga.com: How is it that Eintracht could lose against Saarbrücken in the DFB Cup, and a few days later beat Bayern in such a convincing manner?
Dina Ebimbe: "Yes, it’s hard to believe. Perhaps it’s because we have a young team, and we must learn that every game is important. We had been performing better before Saarbrücken, and we got a little comfortable. Humility is important, and sometimes we forget it. The coach and his staff made this clear to us, and we won’t forget it."
bundesliga.com: Do you think another great result is on the cards against Bayer Leverkusen this weekend?
Dina Ebimbe: "After what we’ve shown last weekend, I believe we can play just as well against Leverkusen. They are leading the Bundesliga, and this is the kind of game we all want to play. We will go there to win."
bundesliga.com: What are Eintracht’s goals this season?
Dina Ebimbe: "We're entering a new cycle, with new players. But we are very ambitious, and our goal is to win as many points as possible. We will see where this will take us, but we are not overthinking it for now."
bundesliga.com: How far can Eintracht go in the UEFA Conference League?
Dina Ebimbe: "We have to win this competition. No other team scares us, and we are capable of beating anyone. We want that trophy."
bundesliga.com: Talk us through your superb assist against Mainz on Matchday 2...
Dina Ebimbe: "I’m a midfielder, but I love to dribble, to create space for my teammates. Christopher Lenz, who is now at Leipzig, had spotted me behind [Danny] Da Costa, who wasn’t watching me anymore. Once I was in there, I knew I could do whatever I wanted. It was easy: after a few touches, I passed it to Omar [Mamoush]. We were so happy about that goal."
bundesliga.com: How important is your speed?
Dina Ebimbe: "I think it’s one of my most important skills. I’m lucky to be a fast, tall and strong player. I use this skill all the time, it’s part of my game."
bundesliga.com: Do you see yourself as a master dribbler?
Dina Ebimbe: "I like to dribble, too. There aren’t many dribblers in this league. The Bundesliga is more about possession, and positioning. I grew up playing freestyle football, which is why having fun on the pitch is what I think about first."
bundesliga.com: You scored the winner against Freiburg on the final day of last season, which qualified Eintracht for the Conference League...
Dina Ebimbe: "That particular moment is my fondest memory of my time at Eintracht. We deserved so much to end the season this way. It was the coach’s last game, and we were fired up. It was absolute madness; everybody was running around, the team, the supporters. Scoring that kind of goal at the last minute is everyone’s dream. It’s an unforgettable moment for me."
bundesliga.com: What would you have done, had you not become a football player?
Dina Ebimbe: "I’m not so sure, but I was quite smart in school. I was good in French and philosophy, so I probably would have done something related to that. But I don’t know where I would have worked, since I’ve always been focused on becoming a footballer!"
bundesliga.com: What was it like playing alongside Kylian Mbappé, Neymar and Lionel Messi at PSG?
Dina Ebimbe: "On some days, I couldn’t even believe it. Mbappé alone would have been huge, but having Messi and Neymar as well, not to mention Sergio Ramos and many more... It was like a dream. I learned so much by just watching them play. They helped me a lot during my time in Paris, even though I can’t copy them, since they are so unique. It was such a great and unforgettable experience."
bundesliga.com: You were born in France, but have Cameroonian roots. Do you feel close to both nations?
Dina Ebimbe: "I’m French, and any player who grows up within the French football system wants to play for the national team in the future. But I’m also a Cameroonian, and I love Cameroon very much. I’m not against the idea of playing for Cameroon’s national team. Both options are open; I’m proud to be both French and Cameroonian. I will remain patient, and see where football takes me. My mother and father taught me the values shared by the Cameroonian people, and I carry that in my heart as well. ”
bundesliga.com: How did your performance against Bayern go down in Cameroon?
Dina Ebimbe: "I’ve received many messages from family members and fans in Cameroon. I feel very close to them, we are all like brothers and sisters, so it feels very nice to get all these messages. They motivate me and boost my moral. It’s great to see that even though I don’t live over there, people still support me and believe in me. I’m very proud of that, and I will work hard to keep making them proud of me."
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