The time had come in the 84th minute of the game. Thomas Kastanaras was sent onto the field for the Swabians in the match between Eintracht Frankfurt and VfB Stuttgart (1:3). The 19-year-old attacker made his Bundesliga debut thanks to coach Pellegrino Matarazzo.
However, many fans of the highest German football league will not be familiar with the name of the attacker. And that despite the fact that Kastanaras was crowned top scorer last season – albeit in the U19 Bundesliga. The native of Stuttgart with Greek roots scored an incredible 26 goals in 20 games for VfB’s oldest youth group.
The 1.86 meter tall penalty area striker is planned for the professional squad from now on. That was already clear when he extended his contract until 2025 in March. At that time, Matarazzo already announced: “Thomas makes a good impression, I like his character. I’m planning to work with him from next season. He should show us what he can do.”
A ligament injury in the ankle put the highly talented youngster out of action for several weeks before the current season. After two appearances for the regional league team (one goal, one assist), Kastanaras was finally ready for the big stage.
In Eintracht’s Deutsche Bank Park, the goalscorer made his debut in the German upper house. The expectations for the Storm Jewel are high. NLZ manager Thomas Krücken described Kastanaras to ‘Bild’ as “Role Model for Younger Players” and as someone that the club and the fans care about “much joy in the years to come” will have.
Change to the DFB
In addition, the debut in the DFB jersey is also on the agenda for the hard-working striker with the strong goal. After Kastanaras played for Greece in the U17 and U19, he is now in the circle of German internationals. The team coached by Christian Wörns meets Poland (23/9) and Romania (26/9). For Kastanaras this might be the next highlight of his young career.