Eintracht Frankfurt’s attack has received plaudits from all across Germany and the side, against all odds, currently sit in fourth position, looking very likely to play in Europe next season.
From a defensive perspective, three players have been the backbone of this remarkable side and one of those is 22-year-old right-back Sebastian Jung.
Jung started his career with the Eintracht Frankfurt youth side at the age of seventeen. His stint in the lower leagues didn’t last too long as deficiencies at right back in the senior team saw the youngster called up to play in the Bundesliga. Jung’s first run in the main team lasted just six starts and he was returned to the Frankfurt II side in the Regionalliga Süd.
He returned to the main side once more after just a few months, though, as back up to Patrick Ochs. Although Jung wasn’t given too many chances to showcase his abilities, this was a good learning experience for the then 19-year-old. These second fiddle performances proved to be enough for a call up to the U-20 national team. The young Germans had a superb 2009 and Jung an an integral part of this side.
The subsequent movement of Ochs into a right midfield position in the 2010-11 season meant that Jung became Frankfurt’s first choice right back. Jung’s solidity on the right flank earned him a call-up to the Germany Under-21 side but he was unable to push for a regular starting position with the junior national team. Eintracht Frankfurt’s season was far from acceptable and 2011 marked their fall into the 2.Bundesliga.
The club’s drop to the 2.Bundesliga and the arrival of new coach Armin Veh catalyzed the club’s revival and Sebastian Jung’s growth. The Eagles had a commendable season in the lower division, finishing second and making a quick return to the top flight of German football. The drop in quality of opposition gave Jung a huge confidence boost and the youngster became a key figure in the Frankfurt defense that ended the season with the second best record in the league.
His constant growth under Veh saw him become a regular feature with the German Under-21 side, with Jung playing a key role in the national team’s qualification to the Under-21 European Championships to be held in 2013.
Eintracht’s return to the Bundesliga this season and their remarkable campaign thus far would surely not have been possible without Sebastian Jung’s brilliance at right back. The 22-year-old has taken the league by storm with his defensive capabilities and has possibly been the league’s second best right back, second only to Leverkusen’s Dani Carvajal.
Not the most attacking wing-back, Jung has been hugely influential to Eintracht Frankfurt’s defence this season. Averaging about two tackles and two-and-a-half interceptions per game, Jung has been without doubt Eintracht Frankfurt’s most stable defender. His superb outings this season were enough to earn a call up to the German senior national team in late 2012.
At just 22, Jung has a long way to go and the acid test will begin only once he moves on to play at a higher level. The likes of Andreas Beck, Benedikt Höwedes and Jerome Boateng have all tried their hand at right back but never managed to live up to expectations for the national team. In Jung, Joachim Löw has a defensively sound player with great fitness and boundless energy. The sky is truly the limit for Sebastian Jung.