The Bundesliga outfits of Eintracht Frankfurt are confident to realize its big dream to reach the final of the Euro League played on May 29 in Baku.
“We might still not be the favorites, but we are strong enough to make it,” Fredi Bobic commented in advance of the second leg against Premier League side Chelsea FC on Thursday evening in London.
“The 1-1 draw in the first game gives us the chance to achieve something great,” the Frankfurt managing director said.
Frankfurt hopes are pinned on the return of midfielder Sebastian Rode and their French striker Sebastien Haller, who both missed the recent Bundesliga match against Bayer Leverkusen.
The former German international spoke of a “wake-up-call just in time” caused by the devastating 6-1 defeat in Leverkusen but added: “We don’t panic after a game like that. We are not one of Europe’s big sides, having to address huge expectations but a team still developing.”
The 47-year-old said he is optimistic the team of Austrian coach Adi Huetter can still achieve all of the club’s goals such as to survive in the Euro League and to qualify for next season’s Champions League competition. He called the 2018/2019 seasons achievements “already beyond expectations.”
To cross the finish line against one of Europe’s leading clubs such as Chelsea it is essential to have the best performers around Bobic underlined.
The final decision about Haller’s participation will be made shortly before kick-off in London the currently fourth-ranked club announced before taking off to the United Kingdom.
Meanwhile, Bobic and Huetter hope they can not only count on the fighting spirit of midfield-leader Rode but on their attacking triangle Haller (5 goals in 9 games), Ante Rebic (1/8) and Luka Jovic (9/13) known among fans as Frankfurt’s “buffalo herd.”
Haller returned from an injury break after he had missed the first leg against Chelsea while Rebic was side-lined on home soil due to a yellow-card-ban.
Bobic said the trio is entirely concentrated despite rumors speaking about offers from prominent European clubs such as Real Madrid or Barcelona FC. Bobic denied a 60-million-Euro-offer made by Real.
“We are not concerned as it would mean great success for the club to sell a striker like Luca Jovic to one of the big sides. It would mean we can invest the money in our future team,” Bobic emphasized.
He said Eintracht is happy to keep Jovic after the Serbian international recently signed a contract until 2023. “But if he gets the chance to join a club like this, we won’t say you are not allowed to go,” the former striker commented.
Frankfurt is comfortable as a supplier for the world leading clubs Bobic said.
Crossing sword with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge Frankfurt depends on the “power our strikers can provide” (Huetter). The coaches called the second leg one of the biggest challenges in the club’s history. “We all are aware what is at stake, we can reach a final, and we are the last German survivor,” he commented.
Dreaming is expressly allowed, the Eintracht coach said. To be part of the last four is something that is causing unlimited excitement.