West News Wire: Colombian striker Rafael Borré, who equalized for Frankfurt in the second half, converted the deciding penalty to give the club its first European championship since the 1980 UEFA Cup, a precursor to the Europa League. The victory also assures Frankfurt’s first appearance in the Champions League next season.
“It feels amazing,” Trapp added. “I’m still trying to catch my breath.” For us, Frankfurt, and the entire region. It’s a good thing for Germany as a whole. It’s an honor to be able to give back to our supporters in this way.”
Trapp, a former Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper, made a key save in the final minutes of extra time by stretching out a leg to stop a close-range shot by Ryan Kent. The veteran goalkeeper used his left leg to stop Aaron Ramsey’s penalty in the shoot-out, setting off huge celebrations by Frankfurt’s “white wall” of fans behind the opposite goal in the Sanchez Pizjuan stadium, Seville.
There were also wild celebrations back in Germany as Frankfurt fans packed the club’s stadium to watch a telecast of the final.
Joe Aribo gave Rangers the lead in the 57th minute and Borré equalized in the 69th for Frankfurt, which became the third team to go through the Europa League unbeaten after Chelsea in 2019 and Villarreal in 2021.
Ramsey, the former Arsenal and Juventus midfielder, entered the match in the final minutes of extra time to take a penalty in the shoot-out. Christopher Lenz, Ajdin Hrustic, Daichi Kamada and Filip Kostic also converted penalties for Frankfurt, while James Tavernier, Steven Davis, Scott Airfield and Kemar Roofe found the net for Rangers in the shoot-out.
“It’s the small margins when you get to this stage of competitions,” Rangers captain Tavernier said. “It was in our own hands but we conceded that goal and then Trapp makes a great save from Ryan Kent. Then he makes the save in the shoot-out and we are all just devastated.”
“You have to score those, especially in the last minutes,” he said.
Rangers was trying to win its first European title since the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1972. The Scottish club also lost to Zenit St Petersburg in the 2008 UEFA Cup. It was trying to cap a comeback 10 years after it was sent to the lower divisions because of a financial meltdown.
More than 150,000 fans came to the southern Spanish city, most of them without tickets for the final at the 43,000-capacity stadium.