Inter Milan 0-1 Eintracht Frankfurt
San Siro, Milan
Eintracht Frankfurt underlined their status as one of the most exciting sides in European football producing a fearless performance befitting the mantle to book their place in the quarter finals of the UEFA Europa League.
Not since a UEFA Cup quarter finalloss to Juventus in 1995 have the Eagles gone this far in a major continental competition and the win over Inter will be firmly etched in the history books.
After showing the Italians too much respect in the first leg of their Europa League last 16 tie, Frankfurt moved on from the missed opportunity on home turf and, not intimidated by the scene set at the San Siro, showed they had learned their lessons and seized the initiative early to play the tie into their own hands.
Lovely lob from Luka
Though more goals were on offer, Luka Jovic scored the only one of the game after five minutes — a beautiful chip that floated high over Handanovic before kissing the far post on its way in.
The goal just served to further carve out the 20-year-old's status as one of the deadliest strikers in his age range as his seventh goal in the UEL took his tally for the season to 22 in 35 appearances in all competitions.
The way the Eagles saw the game out and created chances to the last was testament to another performance belying their experience that preserved their unprecedented unbeaten run in the competition.
A title winner in Austria and Switzerland, Adi Hütter has proven to be the man with the magic touch, picking up where Niko Kovac left off despite a rough start. The Croatian's successor has built on the foundation laid last season to see the club take another step forward in their development and the Europa League campaign stands as proof.
Having dispatched of Lazio and last season's runners up Marseille in the group stages, Champions League dropouts Shakhtar Donetsk in the round of 32 and now Inter Milan, expectation levels aren't rising. Hopes are though.
Away support in full force
The fans remain the heart and soul of the club and the unbridled passion has been unmatched. Over 15,000 fans traveled to Milan to fuel the fires of those on the pitch and witness their side conquering the odds once more. The prematch Tifos on home soil, meanwhile, have harked back to former glories to inspire to current crop of talent.
With the likes of Jovic and Ante Rebic firmly in the shop windows for several of Europe's biggest clubs, it's now or never if the Eagles want to pull of what at the start of the season would have been unimaginable.
Whether they make it the final in Baku on May 29 or not, Eintracht will go down as one of the best things about the Europa League this season. Just as this extraordinary campaign will be etched in Frankfurt folklore. But where Eagles dare to fly they also dare to dream.