Wednesday September 15, 2021
Wild goal spectacle at Man City
In the end it will be a debacle for RB
RB Leipzig caught a bad Champions League group: With Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain, you are faced with two top favorites. At the start, the Bundesliga team in Manchester experienced a wild European Cup evening. In the end, there is still a pack.
Jesse Marsch patted his coaching colleague Pep Guardiola appreciatively on the shoulder. After this bitter lesson in the Champions League, his players trotted depressed into the dressing room. Despite three goals from Christopher Nkunku, RB Leipzig lost 3: 6 (1: 3) to Guardiola’s star football team from Manchester City. Four days after the 1: 4 bankruptcy against the German champions FC Bayern, the English champion was also much better. The Cityzens kept on topping after the Nkunku hits (42nd / 51st / 73rd minute).
Nathan Aké (16th), Leipzig’s Nordi Mukiele (28th / own goal), Riyad Mahrez (45th + 2 / hand penalty), Jack Grealish (56th), João Cancelo (75th) and Gabriel Jesus ( 85.) met for the hosts. In the final phase, Leipzig also weakened itself: Angeliño was sent off with yellow-red (79th). In the parallel game of Group A, Paris Saint-Germain did not get beyond a 1: 1 (1: 1) against Club Bruges.
“We got goals that were way too easy. If you get such goals, it will be difficult to win here,” said Emil Forsberg at the DAZN streaming service. “If we want to keep up, we mustn’t get goals that easily. It’s that simple. It hurts.” The German runner-up was challenged from the start. In a fine, dark suit with a tie, Marsch kept shouting instructions to the field, his Leipzigers struggling to find an offensive way into the game. Manchester played with a lot of speed and direct passes to the top – but needed a set piece to lead. In a corner kick from the expensive newcomer Grealish, Aké prevailed in front of the goal against Mukiele and Willi Orban, Peter Gulacsi could no longer hold his header from close range.
Guardiola cheered briefly and vigorously in his 300th game as city coach, but then immediately demanded concentration from his Skyblues. The former Bayern coach gesticulated wildly and was often back in his element outside of his coaching zone. Marsch had warned shortly before the game: Man City was one of the “best opponents in the whole world”. Compared to the Bayern game, his team must be much more compact. That became increasingly difficult against the star players around Kevin De Bruyne, who returned after a long injury break.
In the switching game, Leipzig too often missed the decisive moment for the pass into the city half – and everything went wrong in defense. Mukiele missed his own goal after a dangerous cross from De Bruyne in a completely unsuccessful rescue attempt with his head. Within half an hour, the hopes of the few RB fans who had traveled with them for a surprise in England had been put down quite a bit.
Towering over Nkunku, City counters
The morale was right in the march team, it was not for nothing that the American asked his players to be very courageous. After a powerful run by Angeliño, Aké cleared his cross in front of André Silva (38th). Shortly before the break, Nkunku rewarded Leipzig’s follow-up in the city penalty area after a cross from Forsberg and a header from Mukiele. The joy only lasted a few minutes. A handball by Lukas Klostermann in the header duel in the penalty area led to the penalty, which Mahrez safely converted.
Leipzig was faced with a difficult task in the second half, but then received unexpected help from the Guardiola-Elf. Dani Olmo was allowed to dribble freely into the Cityzens penalty area and, perfectly timed, put his cross on Nkunku, who made his teammates cheer again. But then Grealish showed his class: The 26-year-old started solo in the Leipzig penalty area and slipped heavily into the RB goal.
Marsch reacted and made three changes, with City player Ilkay Gündogan playing (60th). The hosts subsequently took the pace off their offensive again and again. Again Nkunku caused tension again almost 20 minutes before the end – but again only for a short time, because João Cancelo countered the subsequent goal with a long shot. Gabriel Jesus even let the City fans cheer again.