Eintracht Frankfurt produced a superb second-half performance to overwhelm Schalke in the final game of Matchday 11, with Luka Jovic grabbing a brace as the Eagles moved above champions Bayern Munich into fourth place.
Eintracht Frankfurt 3-0 Schalke
Goals: 1-0 Jovic (61'), 2-0 Jovic (73'), 3-0 Haller (80')
Both sides came into this game after midweek wins in Europe: Frankfurt reached the last 32 of the UEFA Europa League by seeing off Apollon Limassol, while Schalke closed on the UEFA Champions League knockout stages with a 2-0 win over Galatasaray. However, there didn't appear to be too many tired legs in a lively opening, even if a slippery pitch caused by heavy rain before kick-off made it tough to carve out meaningful chances. Frankfurt had the lion's share of possession but Schalke came closest to breaking the deadlock in the first half, with Mark Uth flashing a shot wide after Daniel Caligiuri came charging forward on the counter.
The game burst into life around the hour mark, as Kevin Trapp first made a superb stop to deny Breel Embolo one-on-one, before Frankfurt raced up the other end to take the lead, with Ante Rebic teeing up Jovic for his eighth of the campaign. Rebic then hit the outside of the post after outmuscling Salif Sane, but Frankfurt soon had their second as Jovic fired in a superb first-time half-volley from Filip Kostic's cross, to go top of the Bundesliga scoring charts. Sebastien Haller put the hosts out of sight after Schalke failed to clear their lines from a corner, as Adi Hütter's in-form side made it five wins in six league outings.
- Jovic has scored eight of his nine league goals on home soil, and is now averaging a goal every 62 minutes in the Bundesliga this season.Haller scored for a sixth consecutive competitive game, moving up to eight in the Bundesliga. With his five assists he has had a hand in a league-leading 13 goals, one more than Borussia Dortmund captain Marco Reus.The Eagles extended their home unbeaten run against Schalke to eight games in the Bundesliga. Their last defeat in this fixture came on 6 March 2010, when the Royal Blues romped to a 4-1 win.Schalke captain Ralf Fährmann made his first appearance since early October after recovering from a groin injury, although he failed to keep a fourth straight clean sheet in all competitions.Caligiuri celebrated his 250th Bundesliga outing. The 30-year-old made 93 top-flight appearances for Freiburg, 97 for Wolfsburg, and now has 60 for Schalke.Jovic's brace put him one ahead of Paco Alcacer, Reus and Alassane Plea on nine goals for the campaign.
Watch: Haller believes Frankfurt are under no pressure and can have fun
Frankfurt: Trapp – Abraham (c), Hasebe, N'Dicka – Fernandes (Stendera 87') – da Costa, de Guzman, Kostic (Tawatha 90') – Jovic (Gacinovic 82'), Haller, Rebic
Unused subs: Rönnow, Willems, Russ, Müller
Absentees: Chandler (knee), Geraldes (back), Paciencia (knee), Salcedo (ankle), Torro (pubic bone)
Coach: Adi Hütter
Schalke: Fährmann – Sane, Stambouli (c), Nastasic - Caligiuri, Bentaleb, Serdar (McKennie 65'), Schöpf – Embolo (Harit 83'), Uth (Konoplyanka 54'), Burgstaller
Unused subs: Nübel, Mascarell, Rudy, Naldo
Absentees: Mendyl (ankle), Teuchert (hip)
Coach: Domenico Tedesco