Red Bull Salzburg – RasenBallsport Leipzig: Austrian victory in chaotic Bullfight (1-0)
In a chaotic, high tempo game it was Red Bull Salzburg who got the win they deserved. Although RB Leipzig were more or less obliged to win in order to get through to the knockout phase, they did not manage to make life difficult enough for their ‘little’ brother from Austria.
Tactical analysis by Rowdy Nossent.
Besides the fact that this game is of course a prestigious battle between two Red Bull clubs, there was a lot at stake for Leipzig in terms of their chances of playing European football after the winter break. Going into the match, Red Bull Salzburg were topping the group, with twelve points out of four games. A very comfortable position for the Austrian champions.
RB Leipzig, on the other hand, were still embroiled in a battle with Celtic (both teams on six points), with the second place in the group at stake. Both of these teams are doing quite well in their domestic leagues. RB Salzburg is the undisputed leader in Austria, as they are already twelve points ahead of their competitors, while RB Leipzig currently sit fourth in the Bundesliga.
Salzburg had a number of injury concerns beforehand, but their biggest absence was Amadou Haidara, who is an important force for the Austrians in midfield. Manager Marco Rose opted for Salzburg’s usual 4-1-2-1-2 formation. Goalkeeper Cican Stanković was replaced by Alexander Walke, as Salzburg maintain a rotation policy between the posts.
Leipzig manager Ralf Rangnick made some changes formation-wise. The German coach set his team up in a 3-5-2 formation, which had proven to be successful in a 3-0 . . .