Eintracht trainer Oliver Glasner began the press conference on Friday before the Bundesliga game at FC Augsburg with a clear statement: “The situation has eased, all players suspected of having Corona are fit again, except for Danny da Costa.” Not a matter of course, because like everyone Bundesliga clubs, the Frankfurt professionals are at risk of becoming infected with the corona virus. In the course of the media talk, however, the Austrian had to make a restriction: “As of now, everyone is fit. What I say on Friday doesn’t have to be true by Sunday.”
Glasner had been asked about assumptions published on the Internet that goalkeeper Kevin Trapp and Filip Kostic had tested positive for the virus. His answer was evasive, which he explained as follows: “I’ve learned a bit. Last week I had a clear statement that turned out to be wrong. This time I don’t have such a clear statement, so I won’t give a water level report. If any player was definitely out, I would have said that today. But so far there is nothing.”
A few hours later there was something – namely the official press release from Eintracht, which said that Trapp and Kostic would not be involved in the away game in Augsburg this Sunday (3.30 p.m. in the FAZ live ticker for the Bundesliga and on DAZN). A PCR test on Friday gave a borderline positive result for both with mild symptoms. Both players are in good health.
Glasner and the Lauterbach telephone call
In the announcement, Eintracht justified Glasner’s reluctance by saying that the PCR tests had not yet been evaluated at the time of the press conference. In principle, Eintracht only gives official information about the state of health of the players if the test results have been coordinated with the health department. This is the consequence of the incident with Jesper Lindstrom, whom Glasner had declared unfit to play before the encounter with Borussia Dortmund, but was then able to play. During the press conference, the Eintracht coach announced, just for fun, that he would call Health Minister Karl Lauterbach and the Frankfurt Health Department to clarify the suspected cases in the team.
Corona can spoil a football teacher’s mood, Glasner does not tend to complain. But the fact that there are no uniform regulations and that the Bundesliga clubs are forced to organize ghost games robs him of his composure. Above all, that in some halls and halls more visitors are allowed to come to cultural events than football fans to open football stadiums: “It’s a disaster because it’s a political decision and not a virological one.” That he takes the pandemic seriously and doesn’t downplay it leaves Glasner in no doubt. “I’m extremely careful. Whenever my family visits me, I have them all take a PCR test beforehand, even though all members have been vaccinated or have recovered.”
With which staff Eintracht in Augsburg will try to keep up with the international ranks is not only open because of the unclear Corona situation. Glasner didn’t let anyone look at his cards to see if, for example, Makoto Hasebe would return to the starting XI after sitting on the bench against Borussia Dortmund. “It was Erling Haaland’s fault,” explained the Eintracht coach, who is otherwise reluctant to give up the experience and overview of the soon to be 38-year-old.
But Glasner didn’t want to expect his old Japanese from the young Norwegian giants. Augsburg also has many extremely physically strong players, as Glasner pointed out. Maybe a hint that Hinteregger will remain defense chief. In any case, however, the 20-year-old German junior international Diant Ramaj will make his Bundesliga debut in goal for Eintracht, who switched from 1. FC Heidenheim to main in the summer and replaced Frederik Rönnow as number 2.