Eintracht wins the European League. Eintracht meets Real Madrid in the UEFA Cup. Eintracht plays in the Champions League. crazy!
It all seems a little unreal when you know the history of Eintracht. And when you know how few clubs in Europe have won the title.
However it is not unrealistic, but the logical consequence of evolution. They really inspired everyone in the Europa League in 2018/19 and the team has been unbeatable this season too. So it’s no surprise that the title eventually came out.
What does this success mean now?
Thus Eintracht cemented the status of “the best of the rest” and is the best example that clubs can also be successful through sporting and economic foresight. In times of investors from Russia, America or the Middle East, this cannot be overestimated.
The club now has a chance to be a role model for many. Because it embodies football as it should be.
With a coach who sees the big picture, he has now reached the Champions League with his third club in a row. With a sports board you understand not only the sport, but also how the club is anchored in the community. With economically highly qualified people on the board of directors and the supervisory board. With a responsible and encouraging boss at the same time.
What Eintracht has achieved will have symbolic power for football. Not only in Germany, but all over the world.
I’ve talked a lot about driving now, but the positive picture also includes the behavior of the crowd. They managed to bring this immense passion to the club. And in a way, the team and all the people around them are an icon for these fans. It is symbiosis. A lot of people I’ve spoken to say: Seeing this gives us hope in football.
This is why fans are like secret title heroes to me. They filled everyone with ecstasy and joy. Perhaps that was the most important thing the team needed on the pitch.
And I’m going to name two other heroes who probably won’t be on our radar: Gonçalo Paciência and Timothy Chandler. I watched her protect in the final. How they cheered and supported the team, pushed and motivated the fans, it was almost touching. They haven’t played a minute, but for me they are the symbol of unity this season.
I often ask now if the title and the Champions League can’t be a threat either. And if you look at the examples of Schalke, HSV, Stuttgart or Bremen, the question is justified. For everyone else, participation in the first division was the beginning of a sports meltdown that eventually led to relegation. But I do not see this danger with Eintracht.
Sure, it’s true: The moment you win a title, you can party for a minute. After that, you are already the one being chased who has to defend the title. Who needs improvement to keep level.
You have to get used to it first. I’m still not worried. Because everyone on this team has a huge drive to improve. And because there are many key positions in the club that have people with the right values. This in turn means that only players who represent these values are also brought in.
Take a look at the current team: no one has the star vibe. Kevin Trapp may look like a Hollywood star, but he’s a real team player. The person who identifies one hundred percent with the club. Or Rafael Santos Puri. Well, he may not have scored 20 goals in the season, but he is a tough character and he has the mentality. I can say that for every player.
If Eintracht makes sure that the newcomers also follow these values and not just come because they want to play in the Champions League and earn big money, the development will continue upwards.