News : Bundesliga duel for the cup: RB Leipzig has some advantages against FC Bayern
Before the Bundesliga summit: Duel for the bowl: RB Leipzig has some advantages against FC Bayern
The top Bundesliga match between RB Leipzig and FC Bayern will take place next Saturday. Will Munich make the preliminary decision in the championship race or will Julian Nagelsmann’s team open a real title fight? Quite a few points speak for the Saxons.
The same in red. All the years. For almost 3000 days, the Bundesliga has only known one champions – and he comes from Munich. FC Bayern chases from record to record, giving the word dominance a whole new dimension.
The championship question at the beginning of a season is degenerating more and more into a rhetorical question. The red habitat remains untouched. But after almost a decade of domination, something like a championship fight is looming.
With eight game days to go, the record champions are “only” four points ahead of their closest rival, RB Leipzig. In addition, the direct duel is on the coming weekend. Thus, the Saxons could slide up to one point with a victory.
A real title race? A blessing for the Bundesliga
This scenario would be a blessing for the Bundesliga. And we would have a real title race. But the word “championship fight” has become almost taboo over the years. Similar to Harry Potter, where the mere mention of the name “Voldemort” causes fear and horror.
A similar reaction also occurs in the Bundesliga. Because as soon as the Munich team weaken and there is only a chance of a new champion, the knees of the competition tremble.
In the past – especially under Niko Kovac – FC Bayern offered numerous opportunities, but ultimately nobody was able to capitalize on them. Borussia Dortmund had tried repeatedly, but BVB mostly failed because of themselves. The question of the championship became increasingly a question of mentality.
RB Leipzig has strengths to stand up to FC Bayern
But what skills are needed to stand up to FC Bayern? And even more important: Does RB Leipzig already have these characteristics or does disillusion return again after this match day, true to the motto: Nothing new in the East either?
This time everything could actually turn out differently. Because the cops exude enormous willpower on the pitch. The best example is the game against Borussia Mönchengladbach in the Bundesliga, when the team were already 2-0 down at the break.
At this point in time the old persecution dilemma was looming again. But the Nagelsmann-Elf continued to play undeterred and scored in stoppage time in the person of Alexander Sorloth. A Bayern-like appearance.
“This is how you can become a master,” enthused Lothar Matthäus afterwards on Sky. And added: “They are more mellow and I don’t think they would have won a game like this a year or two ago.”
RB Leipzig: self-confidence and comeback qualities
Leipzig already demonstrated this self-conviction in the Champions League group stage. After the 1-0 defeat in Paris, the team was under pressure. In the last two group games against Basaksehir and Manchester United you were doomed to win – and RB delivered. First Sorloth struck against Basaksehir late. Then followed in the duel against the English record champions a 3-2 trembling victory.
This is exactly where Leipzig currently differs from previous competitors. The bulls’ nerves appear stable, they trust in their own strengths. And they have a few of them.
With coach Julian Nagelsmann they have become even more variable. While the Dosen-Express was under constant power under its predecessor Ralph Hasenhüttl, the team now increasingly acts from possession of the ball.
Leipzig has the perfect balance between offensive and defensive
Without a classic top scorer like the emigrated Timo Werner, the Nagelsmann-Elf is “harder to calculate”, believes RB expert Guido Schäfer, former footballer and today’s author and sports journalist. “The team has internalized Nagelsmann’s life-affirming-offensive nature, can handle resistance well,” explains Schäfer to FOCUS Online.
The result: RB is not only a top team in the league, but also appears as one. In addition, this type of football is more energy-efficient over a whole season.
Especially with a view to the busy schedule due to Corona, this is a great advantage, which is unintentionally reinforced by the elimination in the round of 16 of the Champions League against Liverpool.
While the people of Leipzig are regenerating, FC Bayern fights to defend their title during the week – including signs of wear and tear. And that’s not a myth. All you need to do is look at the number of goals conceded. The numbers relentlessly reveal the side effects of a long season for all FCB players.
So far, the record champions had to swallow 35 goals in the current season. For comparison in the entire 19/20 season, there were a total of 32-17 of which FC Bayern conceded in the first nine match days. So still under the direction of Niko Kovac.
RB Leipzig had to play a similar number of games in all competitions so far, but RB only had to concede 21 goals in the Bundesliga – a league record. Conversely, this means that the Saxons have clearly found a better balance between defending and attacking. As the saying goes: “The offensive wins games, the defensive wins championships.”
In Lewandowski, Bayern are missing the best player
In a direct duel, a lot depends on the form of the day. Both teams have enormous constraints. Bayern are missing world footballer and goal machine Robert Lewandowski, RB has to do without Angelino and Marcel Halstenberg on the left lane.
Schäfer believes Leipzig is ripe for the title fight not only according to the table. “RB has to invest more than Bayern in order to steer the game in the desired direction,” explains the 56-year-old. But he also sees “self-doubt” in the record champions due to the last few weeks and the defensive problems.
Leipzig is close to FC Bayern. This development seems to displease them in Munich, which is why they unceremoniously hired RB-Kaventsmann Dayot Upamecano. The Frenchman will switch sides in the summer.
Of course, FC Bayern only buys players who have the necessary record-breaking format. Nevertheless, the weakening of the competition is a nice side effect. After all, they would have no problem in Munich if the Bavarian dynasty continued. And the Voldemort comparison couldn’t be more accurate: Bayern, the unspeakable.
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