On the back of their 1-1 home draw to relegation battling Hamburger SV, RB Leipzig travel to North Rhine-Westphalia to face Borussia Mönchengladbach in a six pointer at Borussia-Park. In the reverse fixture earlier in the season, Leipzig took the lead twice at home, but were unable to maintain their status as the game finished in a 2-2 draw.
RB Leipzig have started the new year in the same vein as they ended the old, with an element of inconsistency to their game. Having won, lost and drawn their opening 3 fixtures. Despite taking an early lead, Leipzig found it hard to break down a Hamburger SV side under new management, as the visitors did well to eradicate the home side’s threat in the midfield third. Due to an additional 2 points dropped and Leverkusen’s victory over Mainz 05, Leipzig dropped to 5th in the table, outside the Champions League qualification places.
Recovering from their third defeat in five Bundesliga games, Borussia Mönchengladbach go into matchday 21 sitting 7th in the table, within two points of this weekend’s opponents. Gladbach’s approach in their defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt last Friday was to aggressively press the oppositions back line, and block passing lanes, but this was easily escaped, forcing them to alternate their plan and sit deep. With Hazard isolated up front, Die Fohlen were unable to attain all three points, ultimately missing the opportunity to surpass Leipzig in the table.
Mönchengladbach possess the 3rd best home record in the league this season, having averaged 2 points in their first 10 fixtures. Leipzig on the other hand, have struggled on their travels, only attain 11 points from 10 games. With both sides in relatively poor form, this could turn out to be an enticing affair.
Date: Saturday February 3, 2018.
Kickoff: 18:30 (CET)
Venue: Borussia-Park (Capacity: 46,287)
Referee: Tobias Stieler
Broadcasting: BT Sport 2 (UK) | Fox Sports 2 (USA)
RB Leipzig 2-2 Gladbach | Gladbach 1-2 RB Leipzig | RB Leipzig 1-1 Gladbach
Borussia Mönchengladbach: L | W | L |W| L
RB Leipzig: D | L | W | L | D
One To Watch
Sitting alongside Raffael atop of Die Fohlen’s scoring list with seven goals, Thorgan Hazard has stepped out of his brother’s shadows and is making a name for himself in the Bundesliga. Often the focal point in attacks, the Belgian likes to drop deep and operate in between the lines. This particular positioning and movement is dangerous when deployed against a 4-4-2 (a formation Leipzig have become renowned for using), as the Belgian is able to entice a centre-back onto him, creating room for his teammates to run into and exploit.
Tobais Strobl (Cruciate Ligament Rupture), László Bénes (Metatarsal Fracture), Ibrahima Traoré (Muscle Fibre), Raffael (Cals Sclerosis), Yann Sommer (Doubtful), Oscar Wendt (Hamstring Tear), Mamadou Doucouré (Doubtful).
Marcel Halstenberg (Anterior Cruciate Ligament), Emil Forsberg (Return), Ademola Lookman (Debut).
Gulácsi; Laimer, Orban, Upamecano, Bernardo; Demme, Sabitzer, Keïta; Bruma, Poulsen, Werner
Sippel; Jantshke, Vestergaard, Elvedi; Hermann, Zakaria, Kramer, Grifo; Cuisance, Stindl, Hazard
Borussia Mönchengladbach 1-3 RB Leipzig