Evan N'Dicka and Ajdin Hrustic were on target as Eintracht Frankfurt beat VfB Stuttgart 3-2 at the Mercedes-Benz Arena, leaving their hosts mired in relegation trouble.
Stuttgart 2-3 Frankfurt
Goals: 0-1 N'Dicka 7' (assist: Lindstrom), 1-1 Anton 42' (Assist: Führich), 1-2 Hrustic 47' (assist: Lenz), 2-2 Kalajdzic 70' (assist: Sosa), 2-3 Hrustic 77'
Less than 10 minutes were on the clock when Frankfurt took the lead, with N'Dicka converting a Jesper Lindstrom corner which had been helped on by Timmy Chandler. Stuttgart settled well after that early setback, though, and Chris Führich was unlucky to see Orel Mangala squander a fine square ball from the left. The hosts constantly threatened to draw level, with Silas Katompa Mvumpa's pace wreaking havoc. The long-injured winger raced past Christopher Lenz and cut the ball back across goal and Tanguy Coulibaly eventually drilled a low shot narrowly wide with the Frankfurt defence at sixes and sevens. Die Adler then attempted to return fire with Chandler stinging Florian Müller's gloves from a tight angle, but it was Stuttgart who would have the final word of the half, Waldemar Anton forcing a Führich free-kick home from close range.
Hrustic replaced Sebastian Rode at the start of the second half, and moments later he had made it 2-1 to Frankfurt with a fantastic volley from a Lenz corner. Stuttgart should have got back onto level terms just past the hour when Sasa Kalajdzic sprung the offside trap, but the Austrian, who, like Silas has spent much of this season struggling with injury, failed to test Kevin Trapp with his finish. Konstatinos Mavropanos nearly scored an own-goal with an overhit back-pass soon after, but Müller reacted quickly to head the ball out for a corner. Müller's opposite number Trapp then had to be on his toes to tip another Führich effort over the bar for a corner. As happened so often last season, Sosa's delivery and Kalajdzic's height and timing got Stutggart back on level terms, but Hrustic put the game to bed with a shot which deflected off Mavropanos and beyond Müller for 3-2.
Watch: Kalajdzic: "We made stupid mistakes"
- Hrustic scored his first goals since May 2021 in a 1-1 draw with Mainz.
- With his third goal of the campaign, N'Dicka has already matched his tally from last season with 13 games left to play.
- Kalajdzic's goal from a Sosa assist was the ninth time they have combined to scored in the German top flight.
- Stuttgart ended an unwanted club-record run of five games without scoring, with Philipp Förster getting their previous goal in December.
- They have now scored 178 goals against Frankfurt, however, making Die Adler their favourite top-flight opponents in that regard.
- Missing today, Frankfurt winger Filip Kostic played for Stuttgart between 2014 and 2016, scoring eight goals in 59 games.
Watch: Hrustic: "We deserved to win"
Stuttgart: Müller - Mavropanos, Anton, Ito - Silas (Klimowicz 81'), Endo (c), Mangala (Ahamada 59'), Sosa - Förster (Tidibi 59'), Führich (Tomas 81') - Kalajdzic
Unused subs: Bredlow, Stenzel, Massimo, Beyaz
Out: Egloff (match fitness), Marmoush (Africa Cup of Nations), Nartey (knee), Sankoh (knee)
Coach: Pellegrino Matarazzo
Frankfurt: Trapp - Tuta, Hasebe, N'Dicka - Chandler, Jakic, Rode (c) (Hrustic 46'), Lenz - Sow, Lindstrom - Borre
Unused subs: Grahl, Ilsanker, Hinteregger, Toure, Hauge, da Costa, Knauff, Paciencia
Out: Ache (muscular), Kamada (thigh), Kostic (flu), Ramaj (knee)
Coach: Oliver Glasner
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