For their first encounter with Norweigan opposition, RB Leipzig travelled to the Lerkendal Stadium in Trondheim with the hope of overcoming Norway’s perennial champions, Rosenborg, in order to make up for the defeat to Red Bull Salzburg on Matchday 1.
Ralf Rangnick made seven changes from the line-up that defeated Hoffenheim at the weekend, with Yvon Mvogo, Nordi Mukiele, Willi Orban, Marcel Halstenberg, Bruma, Jean-Kévin Augustin and Matheus Cunha making up a heavily rotated eleven.
Rosenborg: Hansen: Hedensted, Hovland, Reginiussen, Gersbach; Jensen, Konradsen, Denić; Levi, Søderlund, de Lanley.
RB Leipzig: Mvogo; Mukiele, Konaté, Orban, Halstenberg; Ilsanker, Demme; Laimer, Bruma; Cunha, Augustin.
From the start, the hosts made life difficult for their guests by applying pressure and created an opportunity for themselves through this within the opening three minutes by capitalising on Diego Demme’s loose touch, heading now the right wing and whipping in a cross that was headed over the bar.
The focus of the opening ten minutes was adjusting to the conditions. With the downpour causing a slippery surface, neither side was able to maintain possession. However, Leipzig struck first in the 11th minute. Demme floated an across field pass over the head of the defender and into Jean-Kévin Augustin whose first touch took him past his opponent and opened up an opportunity that he slotted into the corner with his left foot.
A few minutes later, Bruma had a chance to make it two. Making a darting run in behind the defence, Laimer latched onto a pass and pulled it back for Bruma to swing his right foot at it, but the defender deflected it for a corner. He then tried his luck with a left-footed shot, soon after, from outside the area that skidded across the surfaced and forced André Hansen into an uncomfortable save.
In the 21st minute, Augustin could’ve, and possibly should’ve, grabbed his second of the game. Konrad Laimer threaded a pass into the path of Matheus Cunha, leaving him in a one-on-one race with the goalkeeper. Hansen dove down and got to the ball first, pushing it into Augustin, but the Frenchman took too long and was dispossessed before he could find the empty net.
RB Leipzig continued to dominate the proceedings but were unable to make much use of their possession. It wasn’t until the latter stages of the half that things began to happen. Once again, Laimer made a darting run behind the defence onto the pass of Mukiele, he pulled it back to Cunha who flicked it onto Augustin, but the Frenchman’s effort was blocked. Cunha then had an opportunity for himself. Making space with an incredible piece of skill, he swang his left foot at it and forced Hansen into making a save.
In the opening minutes of the second half, Rosenborg began on the first foot, but it was Leipzig that were creating the better opportunities, although, the final pass was missing. From a corner, Leipzig doubled the lead in front of their 150 travelling support in the 53rd minute. Ibrahima Konaté rose above everyone to reach Halstenberg’s cross but failed to make contact, the ball bounced off Orban behind him and into his path, in which he prodded home from close range.
Three minutes later, Ralf Rangnick’s side was awarded a free-kick on the edge of the area after Cunha was brought down. Halstenberg tried to catch Hansen out with a shot at his corner, but to no prevail.
Not long after Cunha hit the outside of the post, the Brazilian, at last, found the back of the net. Receiving a pass inside the area from Bruma, he had a free shot at goal as Augustin’s movement dragged the defender out of position, and he took full advantage of it, blasting the ball into the roof of the net then dropping to his knees in relief.
Just after the hour mark, Rosenborg had a free-kick for themselves. After a clever turn from Hansen left the forward embarrassed, the goalkeeper launched the ball into the final third where Orban brought down Jonathan Levi. The 22-year-old stepped up to take it and forced Yvon Mvogo into a fine a save. Less than ten minutes later, Levi received the ball on the right, cut inside and fired another shot that forced Mvogo into a save.
With nearly ten minutes to spare, Rosenborg grabbed a consolation goal after a spell of possession. Konaté allowed Alexander Søderlund to receive a long pass having misjudged the ball’s flight, the forward took it down and rolled it into Levi who was left free in the box as Leipzig tried to play him offside. His past missed the first man but was met Issam Jebali at the back post. Condemning their opponents to another game without a clean sheet.
Rosenborg: Erlend Reitan (Vegar Hedenstad, 62′), Issam Jebali (Yann-Erik de Lanely, 68′), Matthías Vilhjálmsson (Đorđe Denić,77′).
RB Leipzig: Lukas Klostermann (Diego Demme, 64′), Marcelo Saracchi (Marcel Halstenberg, 74′), Marcel Sabitzer (Nordi Mukiele, 80′).
Goals: Issam Jebal (79′) | Jean-Kévin Augustin (12′), Ibrahima Konaté (54′), Matheus Cunha (61′).