31.03.2019 20:29 h

Kostic and Jovic fire Frankfurt into top four

Serbian forwards Filip Kostic and Luka Jovic fired Eintracht Frankfurt into the Bundesliga top four with a comfortable 3-0 win over relegation-threatened Stuttgart on Sunday.

Kostic grabbed two goals against his old club to set Frankfurt on their way, before Jovic sealed the win with a cool finish on 84 minutes.

Frankfurt's sporting director Fredi Bobic praised both goalscorers, but admitted that it would be hard for Frankfurt to hold on to Jovic, who has been linked with Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid.

"Kostic works very hard and we know that he is always dangerous in front of goal. Jovic is a great guy, and we will give everything to keep players like him at the club, but it won't be easy," Bobic told Sky.

The win saw Europa League quarter-finalists Frankfurt move above Borussia Moenchengladbach into fourth place and left Stuttgart stranded in the relegation play-off spot at the other end of the table.

After a cagey first half, Kostic fired Frankfurt in front on the stroke of half-time, his shot slipping through the fingers of goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler at the near post.

The Serbian winger doubled the lead 15 minutes after the break, bursting onto an Ante Rebic through ball as Frankfurt carved up Stuttgart on the counter-attack.

Six minutes from time, Danny Da Costa cut the ball back for Jovic, who slotted in Frankfurt's third.

Defeat leaves Stuttgart five points adrift of safety and six points behind Schalke, who sealed a 1-0 win over fellow strugglers Hanover earlier on Sunday thanks to Suat Serdar's first goal for the away side just before half-time.

The win broke an eight-game winless run in all competitions for Schalke.

"The win means a lot to me personally because it was my first goal for Schalke, but the team is the most important thing. We fought until the very last second of the game," Serdar told Sky.

Hanover, meanwhile, were plunged deeper into the relegation mire and are now bottom of the table, nine points from safety.

Serdar's goal was Schalke's first under interim coach Huub Stevens, who celebrated his 100th victory in charge of Schalke after taking the reins at the club for a third time after Domenico Tedesco was fired earlier this month.

"I didn't realise it was my 100th, but a win is a win. In the situation we are in, you have to fight, and the lads did that fantastically today," he told Sky.