Eintracht Frankfurt scouting report: West Ham must beware lung-busting full-back Filip Kostic in Europa League

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Horse-lungs: Serbian full-back Filip Kostic is a relentless figure on the left-hand side for Eintracht Frankfurt  (Getty Images)
Horse-lungs: Serbian full-back Filip Kostic is a relentless figure on the left-hand side for Eintracht Frankfurt (Getty Images)

Standing between West Ham and a place in the Europa League Final is a team personified by a player whose nickname translates as “horse-lungs”.

Eintracht Frankfurt wing-back Filip Kostic is known as “Pferdelunge” because of the relentless running he does up and down the left flank.

The 29-year-old Serbian scored twice as Frankfurt sealed a famous 3-2 win in Barcelona this month, and is the beating heart of the tough, hard-working side hoping to upset West Ham in the first leg of their semi-final at the London Stadium tomorrow.

Like West Ham, Frankfurt have enjoyed a remarkable season in Europe. They are only in ninth place in the Bundesliga, but their win at the Nou Camp this month shows the threat they pose under Austrian manager Oliver Glasner.

Kostic has a wicked left foot, too, while Daichi Kamada brings creativity and vision that could hurt what will again be a makeshift West Ham back line.

The 25-year-old Japanese has a knack for finding pockets of space going forward. He scored twice against Arsenal when Frankfurt won 2-1 in London in the Europa League in 2019 and is a player West Ham will need to keep an eye on.

Frankfurt have their own absentees at the back tomorrow. Cult hero Martin Hinteregger will be at the middle of the back three, but Evan Ndicka will be absent after being shown a red card in Barcelona.

Frankfurt play with wing-backs but, in truth, Kostic and Ansgar Knauff play more like wingers, which should leave space in behind them and will offer encouragement to Jarrod Bowen and Pablo Fornals on the counter-attack.

The Germans struggle to break down opponents who defend deep. With Craig Dawson as his only fit central defender, David Moyes is likely to try to keep things tight, invite Frankfurt on and look to hurt them on the break.

Japanese international Daichi Kamada is the chief creative outlet for Oliver Glasner’s side (Getty Images)
Japanese international Daichi Kamada is the chief creative outlet for Oliver Glasner’s side (Getty Images)

Frankfurt’s Twitter account yesterday posted an article on what to expect from the Hammers. In it, they described West Ham as “a club in the shadow of the London heavyweights”.

After West Ham knocked out Lyon, Declan Rice hit out at the French side’s social media team for suggesting before the game there was “no chance we don’t go through”. You would suspect that the West Ham midfielder now has his team talk for this tie sorted.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting