Weinzierl able to select Finnbogason once again against Frankfurt
FCA welcome Eintracht Frankfurt for their first home game of 2022 on Sunday (15:30 CET). Whilst midfielder Arne Maier is pleased about the fight for places in attack, and head coach Markus Weinzierl wants to build on the performances from before the winter break.
There are a few question marks surrounding the fitness of a few players ahead of the first home fixture of the year. Jeffrey Gouweleeuw and Arne Maier, who both had to be substituted off after picking up a knock during the 3-1 defeat in Hoffenheim, have returned to training recently, and head coach Markus Weinzierl is confident about both of them. The involvement of left-backs Iago and Mads Pedersen is also in doubt, as both have struggled with slight issues recently.
Alfred Finnbogason is available for selection once again, however, and Weinzierl added that he’s been “making a good impression” in training. The Icelander’s return means FCA now have multiple options in attack – something which also pleases midfielder Arne Maier. “We have a lot of quality up front, we just don’t show it enough,” he commented. “Now that we’ve got more options available, there’s greater competition for places.”
The midfielder, who is “developing superbly” according to his head coach, is expecting a “physically intense match with plenty of challenges” against Frankfurt. “We need to push it to our limits, and then we will be successful.” Weinzierl concurs: “Frankfurt are a fine-tuned team, and they were on great form before Christmas,” Weinzierl analysed the team in eighth position. “We’re expecting a very strong opponent, but we also know that we’ve put in several good performances at home this season.”
Weinzierl used the 2-1 victory over FC Bayern München and VfB Stuttgart as well as the 2-0 win away at FC Köln as examples of their brilliant performances this season. The FCA head coach wants his side to bring the game to Eintracht and be bold against their opponents. “We need to play with heart, that’s what we did well in the first half of the season, and not so well in Hoffenheim.”
The head coach doesn’t care who scores the goals, but Maier would be particularly pleased if that were to be him, as he is still waiting for his first Bundesliga goal after 89 appearances so far (15 of which have been for FCA). “My goal will come at the right time,” Maier is assured. “And after that, no one will talk about it anymore.”