At the start of the second half of the season against Dortmund (2:3), Makoto Hasebe only came on in the closing stages. But Frankfurt’s head coach Oliver Glasner underlines the value of the oldest active field player in the Bundesliga for Eintracht.
Frankfurt’s veteran Makoto Hasebe is almost indispensable.
At the start of the second half of the season between Eintracht Frankfurt and Borussia Dortmund (2:3), Makoto Hasebe was missing in the starting XI – and that was due to BVB’s star striker. “It was a bit due to Erling Haaland,” explains SGE head coach Oliver Glasner, who instead called up Evan Ndicka, Martin Hinteregger and Tuta in the three-man chain. “I think we defended him very well,” Glasner praised the trio with a view to Haaland, but also admitted: “If you concede three goals, it’s not like you did everything right.”
So it’s possible that Hasebe will return to the starting XI on Sunday at FC Augsburg (kick-off 3.30 p.m., LIVE! on kicker). “We have several good alternatives,” says the SBU coach. You have to see which occupation of the defense fits best. He was “happy about the selection. And Makoto is always top in terms of attitude and training”.
Hasebe is almost indispensable
Hasebe celebrates his 38th birthday on Tuesday, the Japanese is by far the oldest active professional soccer player in the Bundesliga. Bochum’s Anthony Losilla follows in second place at just 35 years old. And yet Hasebe is one of the almost indispensable personnel at the Hessians. The Japanese has already made 16 appearances this season in the Bundesliga, the DFB Cup and the Europa League – twelve of them in the starting XI.
Frankfurt’s oldie has long been an institution on the Main, and Glasner also relies on it. “I keep talking to him, as well as to Sebastian Rode or Timothy Chandler,” says the Austrian. With the players who have been at the club for a long time, he regularly exchanges views on the mood around the team and the club. Hasebe has been active in Germany since 2007: first at VfL Wolfsburg, briefly at 1. FC Nürnberg and since 2014 in the Main metropolis.
“Fantastic player and human being”
Glasner calls his oldest professional a “full professional through and through” and a “fantastic player and person”. An anecdote as proof: During the short winter break, Hasebe should get a little more vacation time to be able to visit his family in Japan. But because of the quarantine regulations in the Far East, he decided to stay in Europe. And according to Glasner, he asked: “Coach, I’m not going to Japan. Can I come to training on the 30th?” The Eintracht coach thinks that describes him quite well. And perhaps explains why Hasebe is “incredibly appreciated” in the club. Maybe even back in the starting XI.