Eintracht Frankfurt beat Arminia Bielefeld 1-0 in a match that saw Marco Russ make an emotional comeback. The game between Lotte and Dortmund was called off due to snow.
Going into the game on the back of three straight Bundesliga defeats in which they failed to score, Frankfurt were in desperate need of an early morale-booster. And they could not have wished for a better start.
Danny Blum slotted home from ten yards out to put the home side ahead. A low cross from Taleb Tawatha was diverted into Blum’s path by Bielefeld’s Stephan Salger and the young midfielder curled his first-time shot past the onrushing keeper.
Bielefeld are battling against relegation from the second division and the gulf in class to a Frankfurt side chasing a place in Europe was becoming ever more evident. Eintracht controlled the game for long periods with the pacy Tawatha in particular causing plenty of problems.
The underdogs only started to get back into the game in the latter stages of the first half. However, they failed to capitalize on their one chance of note; a low cross by Christopher Nöthe just evading Tom Schütz’ outstretched leg.
Bielefeld started the second half full of intent, putting Frankfurt under pressure from the start. Their best opportunity fell to Vogelsammer in the 50th minute, but he could not take advantage of a goalmouth scramble following a botched clearance by Hector.
The home side were limited to chances on the break as Bielefeld dominated proceedings in their search for an equaliser. Yet despite their best efforts, they simply could not find a way past Lukas Hradecky in the Frankfurt goal.
The most emotional moment of the night came in the final minute, though. Marco Russ came on as a substitute to make his first appearance in 285 days after successfully battling cancer.
Lotte-Dortmund called off
The other quarterfinal of the night was called off at the last-minute due to heavy snow in Lotte. The third-division side had seen their previous two home matches cancelled due to an unplayable pitch. Adverse weather conditions worsened as kick-off approached and the match officials decided to postpone the fixture.