Maximilian Arnold's late winner gave VfL Wolfsburg all three points away to Eintracht Frankfurt
Maximilian Arnold's late winner gave VfL Wolfsburg all three points away to Eintracht Frankfurt

Arnold extends Frankfurt's homesickness

Frankfurt - VfL Wolfsburg ensured Eintracht Frankfurt remained without a win at the Commerzbank Arena as they ran out 2-1 winners in Saturday's late game on Matchday 11.

Unfortunate Bamba

Maximilian Arnold's 82nd minute finish crowned a dominant second-half performance from the visitors, who had gone a goal up after Anderson Bamba's second-minute own goal. Alexander Meier's beautiful free-kick had sent the sides in level at the break, but it was one of few positives to take for the Eagles.

An unchanged Wolfsburg side received an unexpected boost within two minutes of the opening whistle courtesy of the unfortunate Bamba. Diego released the overlapping Patrick Ochs and his low cross was diverted into the net by Bamba’s despairing lunge. Wolfsburg then had a chance to increase their lead through Ivan Perisic five minutes later, but he could only shoot straight at Trapp after a jinking run took him into the box.

Wolfsburg were first to everything in midfield, with Brazilian double-act Diego and Luiz Gustavo particularly energetic. By contrast, Frankfurt's furthest player forward Vaclav Kadlec was lacking in support and proving no more than a nuisance. Ivica Olic’s 18th-minute drive went high and wide for the Wolves, as they continued to dominate proceedings.

Meier lifts spirits

Frankfurt responded well, though, and it was Meier who made the difference on 35 minutes. Gustavo conceded a sloppy foul 25 yards from goal, and the veteran attacker stepped up to place a free-kick over the wall and into the bottom right corner for his fourth goal in his last four against the Wolves. Suddenly it was the hosts that were on the front foot, and the Eagles almost carved out a second goal through Bastian Oczipka moments before the break.

Meier’s driving performance towards the end of the first-half was carried over into the second. After 48 minutes he found himself completely free in the box, and directed a perfect header aimed at the corner, but Diego Benaglio was equal to it, clawing the ball away fantastically. The save signalled another shift in momentum, as Wolfsburg found a second wind, with Arnold going close with two efforts either side of the 50th minute-mark.

Arnold hot streak

Diego’s replacement Daniel Caligiuri should have done better with his driving run in the 56th minute, and moments later Rodriguez’s missile from range was deflected for a corner. Gustavo was everywhere as the Wolves moved the ball comfortably in midfield, bringing Croatian duo Perisic and Olic into things. The latter was almost through twice in the 68th and 70th minutes, but couldn’t quite get on the end of searching balls in behind, while at the other end Naldo’s physicality was still keeping Kadlec quiet.

Just as the game looked to be petering out into a draw, Olic forced the issue. His low centre made its way to Ochs on another venture upfield, and the defender's blasted cross-cum-shot was met by Arnold, who cleverly converted past Trapp for his third goal in his last three appearances. Eagles' replacement Srjdan Lakic had a chance immediately to equalise, but showed none of Arnold’s composure in a one-on-one with Benaglio, who pulled off a smart save to give his side the spoils.

Daniel Thacker

Line-ups and statistics

Check out Wolfsburg's samba star Diego's top five goals courtesy of the official Bundesliga YouTube channel: