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The deadline day departure of Ante Rebic to AC Milan means Eintracht Frankfurt have now lost every member of last year’s brilliant front three. The Eagles have had to rebuild before, but can they do it again this season?
The last of the “Buffalo Herd” has left Germany. After Sebastian Haller’s move to England and Luka Jovic’s exit for Spain, Ante Rebic has become the last member of the devastating strike trio to migrate to pastures new, with Italy his choice of location. The three forwards caught the imagination of fans and clubs across Europe with their rampaging displays for the Eagles in the Europa League and the Bundesliga last term, hence the collective name given to them by sections of the German press. Rebic, the Croatian wide forward who featured in the 2018 World Cup final, is probably the member of the three who most resembles the powerful American beasts. Aggressive and direct, the 25-year-old proved an excellent foil to the lithe, graceful, intelligence of Haller’s holdup play and Jovic’s poaching instincts. TRANSFER TWEET? “It was his big wish to go to Italy and launch himself into a new challenge,” said Frankfurt sporting director Fredi Bobic shortly before the two-year loan deal was confirmed on Monday, with the club having made similar noises when the other two departed. Old with the old, in with the new But at the same time, Bobic confirmed Portuguese international striker Andre Silva would be moving the other way. It was a typically unfussy move from the former Germany striker, who has made a string of savvy deals since taking the position three years ago. As well as the huge profits he’s brought in for Haller (€32 million), Jovic (€53 million) and Rebic (likely to be about €30 million if Milan agree a permanent deal) Bobic has had to cope with the loss of other key men like goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky, key creator Kevin-Prince Boateng and club talisman Alexander Maier in recent years, as well as German Cup-winning coach Niko Kovac, who left for Bayern last summer. All have been replaced with minimal fuss and minimal outlay, with Eintracht’s league position having improved each of the last few seasons, along with memorable cup runs. The question is whether he, and Kovac’s replacement, Adi Hütter, can keep performing one of the most difficult tricks in football. Bundesliga Matchday 3 in pictures Eintracht
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