bundesliga

Filip Kostic inspires top-four contenders Eintracht Frankfurt to Hoffenheim win

Filip Kostic scored one and assisted two as in-form Eintracht Frankfurt moved back into the top four with a polished 3-1 win away to Hoffenheim.

Hoffenheim 1-3 Eintracht Frankfurt
Goals: 1-0 Kostic (15'), 1-1 Bebou (47'), 2-1 N'Dicka (62'), 3-1 Silva (64')

Hoffenheim barely laid a glove on Frankfurt in a one-sided first half. Kostic was dovetailing with Amin Younes to great effect, with the duo combining for the opener in the 15th minute. Younes collected a smart flick-on from Daichi Kamada before playing in Kostic, who drove the ball across Oliver Baumann with unerring accuracy to bring up his second goal in three games. Kostic turned provider for Kamada just past the half-hour mark, but the Japan international's header was chalked off for a clear offside. Another Kostic set-piece then put a golden opportunity on a plate for defender Martin Hinteregger, whose free downward header was straight at Baumann.

Despite offering precious little in an attacking sense in the first half, Hoffenheim were level within 120 seconds of the restart. Half-time substitute Ihlas Bebou did the damage, running almost the entire length of the Frankfurt half, beating Hinteregger for pace and calmly slipping the ball past Kevin Trapp. Ishak Belfodil should have made it two in the 52nd minute, but sent his close-range attempt into the side-netting. The visitors were made to pay dearly for that miss as Evan N'Dicka headed home a Kostic free-kick to restore Frankfurt's lead. Andre Silva extended their advantage within two minutes, the Portugal international converting Kostic's back-post cross to cap a swift breakaway started by Kamada's sublime cross-field pass. Andrej Kramaric and Silva traded chances in the closing stages, albeit with the result long in the bag.

Match stats

  • Frankfurt are the Bundesliga's second-highest scorers (41) this season after Bayern Munich (58).
  • The Eagles are on the longest unbeaten run of any Bundesliga team - nine matches (W7, D2).
  • Kostic has registered six assists in seven league games since the turn of the year. His goal was his fifth in 11 career meetings with Hoffenheim.
  • Bebou netted his fourth league goal of the campaign, on his 50th Bundesliga appearance for Hoffenheim.
  • US defender Chris Richards made his first Hoffenheim start, after joining the club on loan from Bayern earlier in the week.
  • Only one Frankfurt player has scored more single-season Bundesliga goals than Silva this century - Alex Meier (19, 2014/15).

Watch: Silva: "We are strong together"

Line-ups

Hoffenheim: Baumann (c) - Richards, Vogt, Posch (Dabbur 83') - Gacinovic (Kaderabek 46'), Samassekou (Grillitsch), John - Rudy, Baumgartner (Bebou 46') - Belfodil, Kramaric
Unused subs: Pentke, Brenet, Adams, Bogarde, Adamyan
Out: Akpoguma (hamstring), Bicakcic (knee), Geiger (hamstring), Hübner (ankle), Nordtveit (knock), Sessegnon (thigh), Stafylidis (shoulder)
Coach: Sebastian Hoeneß

Frankfurt: Trapp - Tuta, Hinteregger, N'Dicka - Durm (Toure 84'), Sow, Hasebe (c) (Jovic 73'), Kostic - Kamada (Zuber 84'), Younes (Rode 73') - Silva (Ilsanker 89')
Unused subs: Schubert, Hrustic, Chandler, Barkok
Out: -
Coach: 
Adi Hütter