Crystal Palace goalkeeper Sam Johnstone hopes different ideas from new manager Oliver Glasner will help lift the club clear of relegation danger.

Monday evening’s 1-1 draw at Everton came just hours after it was announced that Roy Hodgson, who had fallen ill during training last week, was stepping down and former Eintracht Frankfurt head coach Glasner was taking over.

Palace, with their new boss watching from the directors’ box alongside chairman Steve Parish, had looked on course to register only their third win in the last 14 Premier League matches until Amadou Onana’s 84th-minute header cancelled out Jordan Ayew’s opener.

Victory at Goodison Park would have lifted the visitors eight points clear of the bottom three and given Glasner some much-needed breathing space, but the draw left them only five ahead of Luton, who dropped to 18th as Everton edged out of the drop zone on goal difference.

“It’s sad to see Roy leave and the way it happened, but we’re excited to see a new manager come in,” Johnstone said.

“He (Glasner) will be in this week and we are all excited for the new direction which will bring new ideas.

“He will put his own print on the team and hopefully that can take us up the table.

“The only thing that will change is he will give us new ideas to freshen us up. We go out to train every day to give 100 per cent, we go out every game to give 100 per cent which we will carry on doing.

“It will just be a case of some different ideas, a different way of playing and everyone is up for that.

“That is the only change really because as professional athletes, footballers, we go out every day and give 100 per cent.”

Johnstone paid tribute to his former manager and the impact Hodgson had made during five years over two spells at Selhurst Park.

Asked about the 76-year-old’s legacy, he replied: “Massive. The club has been in the Premier League for 10 years and Roy has been manager for four or five years of them,” he added.

“He’s a great person, first and foremost, and a great manager, so obviously it was tough but we are all glad to see he is well.”

The squad only found out about Hodgson’s departure on the day of the game and, considering the uncertainty in the build-up, Johnstone felt the players coped well.

“It’s been in the media for a few days,” he said. “The focus really was to put that behind us as well as we could, get on with the game and try to get a result for him, for Crystal Palace, the fans and the new manager.

“We’re obviously disappointed we didn’t get three, but at a place like this you could always come away with none.

“It was a tough game and the lads worked hard, so a good point.”

Crystal Palace caretaker manager Paddy McCarthy believes new boss Oliver Glasner will have seen plenty to excite him in the Eagles’ battling 1-1 draw at Everton.

Hours after being confirmed as the successor to veteran Roy Hodgson, who stood down earlier in the day, Glasner was watching from the stand at Goodison Park as Palace claimed a point on Monday night.

McCarthy, who took charge of the side along with fellow assistant Ray Lewington after Hodgson was taken ill last week, feels the team being handed over is in fine shape.

McCarthy said: “He’s seen a team with spirit and commitment to the cause. It’s a good point in the right direction at a difficult place to come.

“I’m sure he will take a lot of positives from the game and I bet he can’t wait to come and work with the lads.”

Glasner, 49, inherits a side 15th in the Premier League and hoping to avoid being pulled into a relegation battle after a poor run of form.

The Austrian led Eintracht Frankfurt to Europa League glory in 2022 and McCarthy feels he is a strong appointment.

The Irishman said: “He is a manager with great pedigree, a European winner. He is coming into a group that I’m sure he will enjoy working with.

“It is a positive move for the football club and one I’m sure will excite the fans.”

McCarthy revealed he had not yet had the chance to meet Glasner and admitted he did not know if he himself had a future at Selhurst Park.

He said: “It was just announced as we arrived for our pre-match meal. I’ve not had chance to meet him.

“It has been a whirlwind couple of days. I’ve had no communication about myself and my future.”

In terms of the game, a dull encounter was lit up when Jordan Ayew broke the deadlock with a superb long-range strike after 66 minutes.

Everton responded well and their pressure eventually paid off when Amadou Onana headed an equaliser six minutes from time.

McCarthy said: “We created some great situations, Jordan took his goal well. We knew the questions that would be asked coming here.

“I thought we defended resolutely for the majority of the game but unfortunately we couldn’t hang on.”

Everton manager Sean Dyche bemoaned the number of chances the hosts wasted but nevertheless felt the point, which lifted the Toffees out of the bottom three, was a valuable one.

Dyche said: “First half it looked like we were off and they were a side where the new manager was sitting in the stand. They had a bit of edge about them and they played well.

“We weren’t miles off but we weren’t brave enough in possession, were too timid, played backwards too much.

“They scored a good goal, a clean strike, but I thought the mentality then was good to get on the front foot. We certainly did enough to get a point and it was a fine delivery and a fine finish.

“It’s another point on the board and we’ve just popped out of the relegation zone but there were chances – we’ve got to start taking them. There were a couple of golden chances we didn’t take.”

Crystal Palace manager Roy Hodgson is in a stable condition and having tests in hospital after being taken ill during training on Thursday, the Premier League club have confirmed.

The 76-year-old was due to speak at a scheduled press conference at 1.30pm to preview Monday’s Premier League game against Everton, but members of the media waiting outside the club’s New Beckenham training ground were informed the briefing would not take place.

According to reports, Palace are set to sack Hodgson, with ex-Eintracht Frankfurt boss Oliver Glasner a strong favourite to take the job.

An update from the club later on Thursday read: “Following news that Roy Hodgson was taken ill during today’s training session, we can confirm that he is now stable and is currently undergoing tests in hospital.

“Everybody at the club sends their best wishes to Roy for a speedy recovery.”

Palace sit 15th in the top flight, five points above the relegation zone, ahead of the upcoming clash with third-from-bottom Everton.

Hodgson took charge of his 200th match as Eagles manager on Monday when his side were beaten 3-1 at Selhurst Park by Chelsea.

The former England boss is in his second spell in charge of the south London club, having returned for the final 10 games of last season when he signed a short-term deal to take over from the sacked Patrick Vieira.

He guided the club to an 11th-placed finish before agreeing to continue as manager for the 2023-24 campaign.

Palace have won just six of 24 league fixtures this term, with only three of those victories coming since a 1-0 success at Manchester United in September.

Disgruntled fans have displayed banners in recent weeks calling for Hodgson to be sacked and vented frustration with how the club is being run.

Austrian Glasner guided Frankfurt to Europa League glory in 2022 following a penalty shoot-out victory over Rangers in Seville.

The 49-year-old, who has also managed Wolfsburg, has been out of work since leaving the Bundesliga side last summer.

Crystal Palace cancelled a press conference to preview Monday’s Premier League game against Everton after under-pressure manager Roy Hodgson was taken ill during training.

The 76-year-old former England boss was due to speak at 1.30pm on Thursday but members of the media waiting outside the club’s New Beckenham training ground were informed the briefing would not take place.

According to reports, Palace are set to sack Hodgson, with ex-Eintracht Frankfurt boss Oliver Glasner a strong favourite to take the job.

An update from the club read: “Unfortunately, today’s press conference will no longer take place as scheduled as Roy Hodgson was taken ill during this morning’s training session.”

Christopher Nkunku and Dominik Szoboszlai scored as RB Leipzig retained the DFB-Pokal with a hard-fought 2-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt in Saturday's final at the Olympiastadion.

Nkunku – playing what will likely be his final game for Leipzig amid suggestions he is set to join Chelsea – beat Kevin Trapp with a deflected effort 71 minutes into a tight encounter in Berlin.

Leipzig were rarely threatened by an uninspired Eintracht team, and Marco Rose's men wrapped up the victory when Nkunku turned provider, teeing up Szoboszlai to score five minutes from time.

That meant Leipzig capped a third-placed Bundesliga finish with a second major trophy in as many seasons, while Oliver Glasner's final game in charge of Eintracht was one to forget.  

Timo Werner spurned a glorious chance to put Leipzig ahead after four minutes, side-footing straight at Trapp following a lightning counter-attack.

Randal Kolo Muani hit the side netting from a tight angle and Nkunku forced Tuta into a last-ditch block at the other end, but both sides struggled to break their opponents down in a cagey first half.

Eintracht's threat grew after the interval, but Mario Gotze volleyed straight at Janis Blaswich when presented with their best sight of goal, and Glasner's side were swiftly punished.

There was a huge stroke of fortune as Nkunku struck first, the Frenchman cutting in from the left before seeing his shot take two deflections to beat the unfortunate Trapp.

Eintracht never looked like fighting back from there, though, and Leipzig put the result beyond all doubt when Szoboszlai fired into the bottom-left corner after composed play  by Nkunku.

With Antonio Conte expected to leave Tottenham by the end of the week, attention is already turning to who might be next to try their hand at what continues to look a near-impossible job.

Spurs are a big club with a fabulous stadium, passionate fanbase and talented squad.

Despite the relative success of Harry Redknapp and Mauricio Pochettino in the last two decades, as well as investing in high-profile bosses Jose Mourinho and Conte, none have been able to bring silverware to the north London club.

The only trophy Spurs have claimed since the turn of the century was the EFL Cup in 2007-08, and any new manager/head coach will be tasked with ending that drought as soon as possible, as well as ensuring another season of Champions League football.

Stats Perform looks at some of the early favourites, with Conte seemingly on the brink.

Mauricio Pochettino

The Argentinian was a very popular figure during his time at White Hart Lane – and subsequently Wembley and Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Pochettino may not have won a trophy, but he presided over two title challenges and the run to the 2019 Champions League final, which resulted in a 2-0 defeat to Liverpool.

He mostly got the best out of his players, too, and took many of them to another level.

His five-year reign included 113 wins from 202 Premier League games, a points-per-game (PPG) average of 1.89, very slightly higher than Conte's 1.88 (32 wins from 56 games).

Pochettino was eventually dismissed by chairman Daniel Levy after appearing to take the club as far as he could, so going back to him when still looking someone to take them to the next level might be a little backwards.

He would likely be a popular choice with the fans, though, and should at the very least provide some stability. Perhaps crucially, he might also be their best bet in convincing Harry Kane to stay.

Ryan Mason

It wouldn't technically be a return for Mason as he never actually left, taking on a first-team coach role after the end of his interim spell at the helm following the sacking of Mourinho in April 2021.

His second game in charge was a 1-0 defeat to Manchester City in the EFL Cup final, but Mason arguably did well considering his lack of experience.

Given he only took charge of six matches, it seems a little pointless to stake a claim for Mason based on his own PPG record (2.0).

But the former Spurs midfielder is the heavy favourite for the job, even if only on a short-term basis again.

Similarly to Pochettino, the thinking behind that choice would most likely be stability and that decision makers at the club may feel the players are likely to respond positively to someone they already know.

Unless he performs spectacularly, appointing Mason would probably be followed by a full-time hire at the end of the season.

Thomas Tuchel

While Tuchel would be yet another former Chelsea boss taking the reins, following in the footsteps of Glenn Hoddle, Andre Villas-Boas, Mourinho and Conte, it's hard to argue with his credentials.

The German won 35 of 63 Premier League games with the Blues, a PPG average of 1.94, as well as winning the Champions League in 2021.

Considering Spurs are eager to win a first trophy since 2008, the fact Tuchel guided Chelsea to five finals – including the 2021 Club World Cup – in less than two years will no doubt appeal, even if he did lose three of them.

Tuchel reportedly left Stamford Bridge partly due to a disagreement on transfers with owner Todd Boehly, which may not bode well given Conte's consistent complaining about the way Spurs work in the market.

Either way, the man who shared a furious handshake with Conte earlier this season could well be the same person to replace the Italian in the Spurs dugout.

 

Luis Enrique

The former Real Madrid and Barcelona player most recently won 27 of 48 games as Spain head coach, but international football can be a different world to the top-level club game.

Luis Enrique was very successful in his last club job at Barca, though it admittedly helped having a front three of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar all at their peak.

He won two LaLiga titles, three Copa del Rey crowns, a Supercopa de Espana, a European Super Cup and a Club World Cup, as well as the 2014-15 Champions League as part of a historic treble.

Overall, Luis Enrique won 87 of his 114 LaLiga games (2.4 PPG), but it is difficult to compare this to counterparts at Spurs given Barca's relative dominance in Spain.

His record at Roma earlier in his career could be a better barometer, winning 16 of his 38 Serie A games in charge of the Giallorossi (1.5 PPG), before winning 14 of 38 LaLiga matches as head coach of Celta Vigo (1.3 PPG) before heading to Camp Nou. But how relevant are these spells now given he left Balaidos nine years ago?

Similarly, the fact he's not had a club job since 2017 might be seen as problematic by some fans, while it could also be argued he underachieved with Spain.

Roberto De Zerbi

De Zerbi has made his mark on the Premier League very quickly since replacing Graham Potter at Brighton and Hove Albion in September.

Brighton have thrived and find themselves in a genuine fight for Europe, with a top-four finish not out of the question at this stage as they sit seven points behind fourth-placed Spurs with three games in hand.

De Zerbi has won eight of his 19 Premier League games, while the Seagulls rank second in the Premier League for passing accuracy (86.9 per cent), average possession (62.1 per cent) and passes per sequence (4.5). They are also third for goals (35) and fifth for passes played into the opposition's box since his first game, highlighting an attack-minded approach that would certainly be appreciated by a frustrated Spurs fanbase.

Getting him out of Brighton will be easier said than done, however, having already lost one head coach this season, not to mention their renown for getting a good deal – Potter reportedly cost Chelsea £21.5million.

Spurs will almost certainly have to pay through the nose or look elsewhere.

Oliver Glasner

A surprise name that has emerged in recent days is that of Eintracht Frankfurt head coach Oliver Glasner, who impressed so many by leading the Bundesliga club to Europa League success last season.

Glasner made a promising start to his coaching career in his native Austria with Ried and LASK, before guiding Wolfsburg to seventh and fourth-placed finishes in the German top-flight.

He then made the switch to Eintracht ahead of the 2021-22 season. He could only guide them to 11th in the Bundesliga, winning just three of their 17 games in the second half of the campaign, but this came amid the backdrop of Europa League glory, eliminating Real Betis, Barcelona and West Ham before beating Rangers in the final on penalties.

Some reports suggest Levy has already contacted Glasner, whose contract expires in 2024.

This season, Eintracht sit sixth in the league and were recently knocked out of the Champions League last 16 by Napoli.

Tottenham and Antonio Conte appears set to part ways imminently following the Italian's explosive rant after their 3-3 draw with Southampton on Saturday.

Conte's Spurs contract is due to expire at the end of this season and he has been linked with a return to Italy to be closer to his family.

Spurs have been eliminated from the Champions League and FA Cup but remain firmly in the race to finish in the Premier League's top four, currently sitting fourth but fifth-placed Newcastle United are two points behind with two games in hand.

TOP STORY – SPURS TURN TO EINTRACHT BOSS IN SHOCK MOVE

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy is looking to Eintracht Frankfurt head coach Oliver Glasner as a potential replacement for Antonio Conte, according to Bild.

The report claims Spurs have already made contact with the Austrian's representatives about the surprise move.

Glasner is yet to sign an extension on his deal from Frankfurt which expires in 2024. Tottenham have Glasner in their sights, having led the Germans to the Europa League title last season.

 

ROUND-UP

Manchester United and Newcastle United will battle it out to land the signature of Roma forward Paulo Dybala, reports Calciomercatoweb. The Argentinian is set to be available for a bargain price, given he has a release clause for overseas clubs to sign him for just £10.6million (€12m).

– Relevo claims Chelsea are working behind the scenes to make Joao Felix's loan stay at Stamford Bridge permanent beyond this season. The Portuguese joined the Blues in January on a six-month loan from Atletico Madrid, for whom he penned an extension until 2027 on the eve of that move.

– The Times claims Tottenham will demand £100m upfront for captain and star striker Harry Kane, who is out of contract in 2024. Manchester United have been linked with Kane, while Bayern Munich previously showed an interest, although that has reportedly waned.

Juventus' pursuit of Chelsea's midfielder N'Golo Kante has been dealt a blow, with the Frenchman unlikely to leave Stamford Bridge, reports Tuttomercatoweb.

– Football Transfers claims Arsenal will look to tie down Norwegian midfielder Martin Odegaard on a long-term deal until 2030. His deal expires in 2025.

Arsenal are interested in Salzburg's 22-year-old forward Noah Okafor, claims The Daily Mail. Tottenham and Milan are also keen on the Swiss talent.

Luciano Spalletti has backed star Napoli pair Victor Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia to rise to the occasion as they prepare to face Eintracht Frankfurt in the Champions League last 16.

Osimhen and Kvaratskhelia have been two standout performers for Napoli this season, who boast a 15-point lead in Serie A and coasted through their Champions League group earlier this season.

Ahead of their first leg in Germany against the reigning Europa League holders, Spalletti heaped praise on both, as well as the club's decision-makers who brought them to Naples.

"From the point of view of maturity, we can cite Osimhen's reaction to Sassuolo [on Friday] as an example [when he asked to come off after feeling a potential injury]," he told reporters. "As soon as he realised he had a little problem he evaluated correctly, asking for a substitution.

"This is the player who knows how to evaluate things very well, these two types [Osimhen and Kvaratskhelia] they are two of those who truly have the flair, the imagination, the quality to send a message to world football. At the same time, they are two very young boys.

"[Sporting director, Cristiano] Giuntoli and [chairman, Aurelio] De Laurentiis were good at choosing them from a very large group of players, this youth still needs to be shaped, matured.

"Tomorrow night will be an event to be attacked. In my opinion they will be able to interpret it. It is not allowed to be afraid. We will see football that only those at this level can make."

The former Roma and Inter head coach also leaned into a Christmas analogy put to him by a reporter, comparing the Champions League knockout stage to Christmas morning.

"I have to give the reindeer some milk, because it's the night before, it's a party for me," he replied. "We'll see if we can unwrap the presents or not."

Spalletti will go up against opposite number Oliver Glasner, who has impressed at Eintracht since taking over in 2021.

"I know him well because I had already met him when I was coach of Zenit, there is mutual respect as regards the work of the other, for my part," the Italian said. 

"I have a number of people who Napoli makes available to me and who go to see the work of the teams that manage to play good football. Since he won the Europa League we too have gone to see what Glasner is doing.

"He is modern, he knows how to make his team play very short, he knows very well how to press high and bring the team block low and start again in space. He has players who know how to use this space very well.

"We congratulate him on the football he has played, he is doing it even in the league. Precisely for this reason it will be delicate and difficult."

Eintracht Frankfurt have condemned an alleged Nazi salute from a supporter during their 1-0 win at Marseille, with the club's first Champions League win overshadowed by crowd trouble.

Jesper Lindstrom's first-half goal guided Eintracht to their first Champions League victory, extending their unbeaten away run in Europe to seven matches.

However, what should have been a momentous night for Oliver Glasner's team was marred by off-pitch events, with social media footage seemingly showing the two sets of fans aiming fireworks at one another in the stands.

Further footage appeared to show a supporter making a Nazi salute within the stadium, leading the club to respond in the aftermath of their victory.

An Eintracht statement read: "The club dissociates itself completely and utterly from the one isolated incident that occurred during the run-up to the UEFA Champions League match between Olympique de Marseille and Eintracht Frankfurt, where a gesture resembling a Nazi salute was made. 

"Anti-Semitic ideas are totally opposed to the club's categoric and immutable values and roots.

"The person who can be seen on the video and who has yet to be identified reported of their own accord to the Eintracht Frankfurt fan representatives during the first half of the match and emphatically denies the accusation of anti-Semitic motives. 

"Eintracht Frankfurt will be conducting a detailed investigation of the events and the behaviour of the person involved."

Asked about the unsavoury scenes after the match, Eintracht coach Glasner said: "I focus on the sporting aspect, my role is sport. But I believe that these idiots do not belong to football, nor to the world.

"We all agree that they should not be given too much importance. I prefer to talk about football. This aggressiveness is not just a football problem, it is a general problem today."

Juventus have announced the arrival of wing-back Filip Kostic from Eintracht Frankfurt on a four-year deal, with the 29-year-old reportedly commanding a fee of €16million including add-ons.

Kostic, a key player in Eintracht's Europa League triumph last season, was absent from Oliver Glasner's squad as they lost 2-0 to Real Madrid in the Super Cup on Wednesday.

Glasner declared the Serbia international would leave the Bundesliga club "as a hero" ahead of that match, before Kostic posted a heartfelt message to Eintracht's fans on Instagram.

After Kostic underwent a medical with Juventus on Thursday, he has been revealed as their latest addition of a busy transfer window, following the acquisitions of Paul Pogba, Angel Di Maria and Gleison Bremer.

A statement on Juventus' website read: "A player possessed of talent, strength and speed, able to cover the entire flank. The naturally left-footed wide player has shown over the years that he can play in every area of the pitch, but prefers to throw himself in attack, dishing [out] assists when required.

"The above presentation is basically the football identity card of Filip Kostic, the 29-year-old Serb who is now a Juventus player, having signed a contract that ties him to the club until June 2026."

Kostic, who joined Eintracht in 2018, scored seven goals and added 13 assists from his role as a flying left wing-back last season (in all competitions), also creating 112 chances for the side – almost double the highest tally managed by any of his team-mates (Jesper Lindstom created 57).

The 29-year-old will hope to be involved when Juventus host Sassuolo in their opening match of the new Serie A campaign on Monday.

Real Madrid were simply "on another level" to Eintracht Frankfurt, according to head coach Oliver Glasner, who nevertheless demanded his team find a way to improve further.

Glasner's Eintracht side were comfortably beaten 2-0 by the Champions League winners in the Super Cup on Wednesday.

David Alaba put Madrid ahead in the first half at Helsinki Olympic Stadium, before Karim Benzema netted midway through the second half to put the result to bed.

In the process, Benzema became Madrid's outright second-highest goalscorer, having scored 324 times for Los Blancos.

While Glasner did not believe his side delivered the "special" defensive performance he asked for before the game, he knows Madrid are a difficult team to match.

"I think we improved from the last game [a 6-1 defeat to Bayern Munich], but you can't give Madrid two chances," Glasner told a news conference.

"The team did it well most of the time. After that, it was difficult and, in the end, Real Madrid was the better team and they deserved the win."

He added: "I think you could see we had defensive stability for many periods today. The last ball, the last pass, did not come enough.

"We want to improve, we need to improve at this, but the performance today left me quite optimistic. We've seen at this level, this kind of opponent, it's not quite enough.

"It's nagging at me, but I have to accept it and it's important now to have that ambition, the whole team, club and staff to work really hard to make that one step closer to such teams. Real Madrid are on another level. We knew that beforehand, but I am not like that, I want to improve.

"I think all of us, the whole team, we played at our highest level. The fact is that it wasn't enough against Real Madrid. Now it's about pushing our personal level a little higher, as a team. That is the task that is presented to us right now. If all of my players are as motivated as I have seen, we will increase our level."

Eintracht were without Filip Kostic, with the wing-back on the verge of moving to Juventus. Nevertheless, they had some good opportunities, particularly early on, when Daichi Kamada forced a fine stop out of Thibaut Courtois, who has saved all 19 shots on goal he has faced from opposition players in his four finals with Madrid in domestic and UEFA competitions.

"It was a decisive situation. I don't know if it would have been enough but, of course, it would have been easier to lead the game at 1-0," Glasner said.

"Against teams like Real Madrid, Bayern, Barcelona, you have to create your chances when you get them. How early Courtois sees where Kamada would put the ball was really world class. He showed this in the Champions League final against Liverpool."

Eintracht Frankfurt's defence must be "special" to deal with Real Madrid's Karim Benzema-inspired attack in the Super Cup, according to head coach Oliver Glasner.

Europa League winners Frankfurt take on the Champions League victors in Helsinki on Wednesday.

Yet Frankfurt come into the clash on the back of a 6-1 home hammering at the hands of Bayern Munich in their opening Bundesliga fixture on Saturday, while they are also without their creative hub in the form of Filip Kostic, who has been left out of the squad to seal a transfer for Juventus.

While confident his team can come away with a surprise victory at the Olympic Stadium, Glasner acknowledged they must be far less open than they were against Bayern, who were 5-0 up by half-time.

"If we have to play against Real, we need a special defence, especially [against] Benzema, who was the best scorer in the Champions League, really great in box, but it's important that the players who give him passes, whoever plays, that we prevent the players passing into the box because it will always be very difficult to defend Benzema," said Glasner in a news conference.

"That's the idea, act in a compact manner, pressure Madrid so they don't have very much space.

"We're feeling very good, looking very much forward [to the game]. Great compensation for the Europa League final, for the win, playing the Super Cup now, playing a Champions League winner that knocked out Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea.

"Of course, the team that waits for us is high quality, we want to show our best football, give our best on the pitch... we're not really scared, we're looking forward to it.

"We showed last year on the European stage there's always a chance, we took that chance."

While Frankfurt, who defeated Barcelona en route to winning the Europa League, might be inexperienced when it comes to matches of this magnitude, they have signed a player who is very much accustomed to big occasions in the form of Mario Gotze. 

Former Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund playmaker Gotze, who scored Germany's winner in the 2014 World Cup final, joined Frankfurt from PSV, and Glasner is delighted with his impact so far.

"We are glad that Mario joined us. He integrated really quickly, his technical qualities, his sense for finding solutions, he's very zealous, running a lot," Glasner said. 

"He already played 50 or 60 Champions League matches, he has a lot of experience at this level, so for him it's not the newest thing to play against teams like Real Madrid."

Another player who has played for one of Europe's biggest clubs is Frankfurt goalkeeper Kevin Trapp, who insisted he will not do anything different to prepare for the game, despite going up against the likes of Benzema and Vinicius Junior.

Trapp said: "There are butterflies in my stomach, but I am happy to play in this game tomorrow.

"It's a huge possibility to show our strengths, but I don't prepare in a special way, everyone knows these players and their qualities, how strong they are.

"My job is always the same, to help the team not concede any goals, that'll be my job, but we will face a lot of quality with Benzema and Vinicius, whoever it is."

Oliver Glasner is disappointed to see Filip Kostic leave Eintracht Frankfurt, but is happy that the Juventus-bound winger will leave the club a hero.

Kostic looks set to have played his last match for Frankfurt, with the versatile winger having been left out of the Bundesliga side's squad to face Real Madrid in the Super Cup on Wednesday.

Since he signed for Frankfurt from Hamburg in 2018, Kostic has played more games (167) and started more matches (161) than any other player for the club in all competitions.

His 30 goals trails only Andre Silva (45) and Luka Jovic (31), while he is way clear in terms of assists (56) and chances created (420), with 269 of them coming from open play.

Indeed, Kostic's tally of 1,702 passes played into the opposition's box, including crosses, is almost 1,300 more than second-best Daichi Kamada.

Glasner knows Kostic, who has excelled as a wing-back, will be a huge miss as he explained why he feels the move is bittersweet.

"Today it's as if I'm laughing and crying," Glasner told a news conference at Helsinki's Olympic Stadium. "Filip left his mark on our attack, it's never nice to lose such a player.

"It definitely weakens us, but I also have this laugh, thinking about how the season started last year with Filip when he went on strike and didn't want to play.

"I had a lot of conversations with him about playing 100 per cent for the team. I asked him that when he left Frankfurt, to please leave as a hero, and now he's leaving as a hero, he was the player of the year and he won the Europa League. I'm really happy for him, but yes it's sad [that he is leaving]."

 

Glasner acknowledged he was surprised at how swiftly Kostic's move, which has been speculated on for weeks, transpired between Frankfurt's 6-1 defeat to Bayern Munich on Saturday and Wednesday's encounter with Champions League winners Madrid.

As such, he suggested Frankfurt's system will not change for upcoming games, but that it may be open to tweaks over the coming weeks.

"[On Monday] it became more and more clear that Filip could leave. You won't see a big system change [against Madrid] but it is possible we change things in the next weeks or months, that is the job of the coach, to find the best system," he added.

"I didn't maybe expect it to be so quick. I had a feeling, even after the Bayern match, that he would play. Well, this dream was broken.

"But every time someone leaves it's an opportunity and I prefer to see the opportunities, not what is missing. It will be an opportunity for other players. It's not like it's a complete shock, the club is prepared and the transfer window is still open."

Goalkeeper Kevin Trapp echoed Glasner's sentiment, but was confident his team-mates have not been shaken by Kostic's departure.

Trapp said: "The topic of Filip, we've had it every year at the beginning of the season. It's sad, Filip did something historic for the club, did a lot with the club, he's leaving as a hero who was a big part of this achievement.

"But it's part of football, part of businesses. We have a team capable of showing good performances without Filip, but it's nothing that shocked us or has shaken us after the speculation of the last weeks. It's a departure that hurts but nothing that will shake us too much."

Oliver Glasner has prepared Eintracht Frankfurt to face "a mixture of Barcelona and West Ham" when they go up against Rangers in Wednesday's Europa League final.

Eintracht and Rangers both hope to end lengthy European trophy droughts when they tussle at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan in Seville on Wednesday.

The Germans last enjoyed such a success in 1980 when they won the UEFA Cup, while Rangers' most recent continental triumph came eight years earlier in the European Cup Winners' Cup.

Neither side was expected to reach the showpiece, with Eintracht impressively seeing off Barcelona before knocking out West Ham, while Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig were among the teams dispatched by Rangers.

Of course, both BVB and Leipzig enjoyed significantly superior seasons domestically than Eintracht, who ultimately finished 16 points behind the latter in fourth.

But he dismissed the importance of Rangers already beating two teams who are supposedly better than Die Adler.

"You can't do these calculations. If you win versus second and fourth in the Bundesliga then you are favourite because we were 11th in the Bundesliga? It doesn't matter. Both teams deserve to play this final," Glasner told reporters.

The Eintracht coach also seemingly believes the previous assignments against Barca and the Hammers will have put Eintracht in a good position to get to grips with what Rangers can offer.

"We've analysed Rangers – they're a mixture of West Ham and Barcelona," he added. "You can see the Dutch influence [of coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst] with the passing triangles, but [they have] a British mentality.

"We have to be in top form tomorrow. We are in great shape so we will be playing with lots of enthusiasm. The whole of Europe is looking forward to this match."

Asked to elaborate on what defines a "British mentality", Glasner said: "Rangers are a team that play lots of duels, and they are very robust in those duels.

"They have great desire to run back after losing ball, and not just the full-backs. [James] Tavernier is top scorer in Europa League, which shows he runs a lot; the defensive midfielders want to work hard there as well, they're always ready with this readiness to defend but also to go forward.

"That is combined with a very good [style of] football. They play fast with few contacts [direct], so this is how they scored their goals.

"They can cross early, against [Sporting] Braga and Leipzig they scored like this. This is the British mentality."

Sebastian Rode is a key man for Eintracht, with his experience and leadership on the pitch important commodities for Glasner.

While Rode has enjoyed a distinguished career, representing Dortmund and Bayern Much in the past, even he recognises Wednesday's final will be the pinnacle for him.

"This is the highlight of my career, it's one game and it'll be gigantic tomorrow," he said.

"We of course in the last few weeks have seen the euphoria. If you go shopping everyone talks about [their route to the final] and that everyone wants us to win.

"We get goosebumps thinking about that. Both fans will create a crazy atmosphere."

Eintracht Frankfurt coach Oliver Glasner assured Evan Ndicka had not suffered an injury that would keep him out of the Europa League final after the defender hobbled off on Saturday.

Frankfurt's focus turns towards Wednesday's showpiece against Rangers in Seville after their Bundesliga campaign concluded with a 2-2 draw against Mainz.

But there was momentary concern during the final match of the league season as Ndicka had to be substituted.

Ndicka, who has been linked to both Manchester United and Newcastle United, will have a key role to play if Frankfurt are to beat Rangers to the trophy.

And Glasner had positive news on the 22-year-old's condition afterwards, saying: "It's nothing bad – he has blisters on his feet. Everyone came out well."

The coach confirmed all his players were "fit" following the match – including, perhaps, midfielder Jesper Lindstrom, who has not played since the European semi-final first leg against West Ham due to a hamstring injury.

"He looks pretty good," Glasner said. "Everything is going according to plan."

However, he wants to see Lindstrom on the training pitch in the coming days if the Denmark international is to play any part in midweek.

"Only from the couch and from the massage table, it is not possible," Glasner added.

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