VfB Stuttgart is RB Leipzig’s favorite opponent. But against the Swabians it was tough for a long time. Only in the second half did RB show his class.
Turned the game, avoided false starts, celebrated a runaway victory: Thanks to an outstanding second half, RB Leipzig defeated VfB Stuttgart 5-1 (0-1) and averted a botched start at home with a show of force.
Benjamin Henrichs (51st minute), Dani Olmo (63rd), Lois Openda (66th), Kevin Kampl (74th) and Xavi Simons (76th) scored for the Saxons in the Bundesliga game, which was characterized by four videos. Serhou Guirassy (35th) gave Stuttgart the lead after a serious mistake by national player David Raum.
“We started well in the second half and then deserved to win. That was fun,” said RB captain Willi Orban on DAZN and added when asked about the second half: “We know what we can do. We have that confidence.”
“It was a brutal game, a brutal evening. In the end it’s very, very bitter that you lose 1:5. It hurts,” said Stuttgart goalkeeper Alexander Nübel. In the previous week, the Swabians had secured the lead in the table with a 5-0 win against Bochum.
Werner on the bench, Poulsen in the starting XI
In front of 46,084 fans, the focus was often on referee Frank Willenborg (Osnabrück) and his colleagues in the Cologne video cellar. Twice they checked for a penalty kick (there was none), twice they checked an Openda hit (there was only one). In the end, the referee team was correct in every decision.
At the home start, coach Marco Rose first made a personal statement. Timo Werner, who has been goalless for 716 minutes, had to go on the bench and was replaced by Yussuf Poulsen. Against low-lying Swabians, Rose expected more power and aggressiveness when starting, which the Dane promptly delivered. But Stuttgart, who have only scored two points from ten duels with Leipzig, were not really faced with any problems from the high pressure – and had the first opportunity. Chris Führich just pulled away, RB keeper Janis Blaswich fended off, but Guirassy put the margin over it.
After the 2: 3 at the start in Leverkusen, Rose again emphasized that the team needed time after the upheaval. It soon became apparent how difficult it was to lose key players like Christopher Nkunku and Dominik Szoboszlai. Leipzig had more possession of the ball and combined well. But there was no danger of scoring, there was no flash of inspiration in the last third. Openda only fired the first shot in the 28th minute, and Stuttgart goalkeeper Alexander Nübel didn’t even have to intervene.
Disassembly in half two
On the other hand, David Raum made a major drop. The national defender played the ball directly into Atakan Karazor’s foot in front of his own penalty area, who passed it on to Guirassy – 0:1. Leipzig only woke up in stoppage time. First Openda (45 + 3) failed in front of the goal at Nübel, then RB demanded a penalty after a supposed foul by Guirassy on Willi Orban. However, the attacker was previously pushed by Poulsen, which video evidence confirmed. Rose saw things differently and stormed towards referee Willenborg after the half-time whistle – yellow card. Assistant coach Alexander Zickler prevented worse by pushing Rose back.
Two minutes after the restart, Willenborg and his colleagues were back in the spotlight in Cologne’s video cellar. After a free kick from Raum, Orban headed and Nübel saved from close range with an outstanding reflex. However, Orban was hit with his foot in the neck shortly after the header by VfB defender Waldemar Anton. Willenborg watched the scene several times – and didn’t give a penalty.
But it was Leipzig’s turn now, aggressively attacking every ball. Henrichs ran to Nübel after a back pass and blocked the keeper’s liberation into the goal. Two minutes later, Nübel messed up again. He smacked a cross from Poulsen right in front of Openda’s feet. 2:1 Not quite. The video referee called again. The Leipzig striker was just offside.
But RB was not deterred, Stuttgart hardly left any space. Olmo took the lead after brilliantly taking the ball, Openda followed suit just three minutes later. When the Belgian scored, the video referee again checked for offside, but this time everything was fine. And now everything worked. The notoriously indefensible Kampl scored from a deflected shot, two minutes later new signing Simons scored. Stuttgart was mentally broken.
I am Pierce Boyd, a driven and ambitious professional working in the news industry. I have been writing for 24 Hours Worlds for over five years, specializing in sports section coverage. During my tenure at the publication, I have built an impressive portfolio of articles that has earned me a reputation as an experienced journalist and content creator.