RB Leipzig suffered a setback in the Bundesliga title race and left big points behind. Although coach Marco Rose’s team remained undefeated in the 18th game in a row and thus equaled the club’s internal record, they only managed to draw 0-0 at the hard-fighting 1. FC Köln.
RB thus missed the opportunity to at least temporarily overtake Bayern Munich. The record champions, who play at VfL Wolfsburg on Sunday (5.30 p.m.), are still one point ahead of Leipzig and could extend their lead. FC, who remained undefeated in their fourth competitive game in the new year, are firmly in the middle of the table.
Marvin Schwäbe was a guarantee for Cologne’s point win: The goalkeeper made a splendid save against Andre Silva (26th) and Timo Werner (32nd). With the first offensive action, national striker Werner could have put his Leipzigers in the lead, but he missed (3rd).
As announced by FC coach Steffen Baumgart, Cologne started bravely and stormily in front of 49,200 spectators. With high pressure, they conquered the ball again and again, but then often remained too imprecise. The Leipzig defensive with the attentive World Cup third Josko Gvardiol was attentive and allowed little.
If RB managed to cover the first Cologne pressing line, it suddenly became dangerous. Like in the 26th minute, when Konrad Laimer used Silva perfectly: The Portuguese failed just as badly against Schwäbe as Werner did a little later from an acute angle.
1. FC Köln: Latte prevents leadership
FC continued to counter and had their first huge chance after winning the ball: Linton Maina first shot at the left post, Dejan Ljubicic (both 37′) put the rebound on the crossbar.
After the break, Leipzig cheered early on about Werner’s supposed leadership. But preparer Silva was previously clearly offside (47th).
Even without a goal, the game remained intense and exciting. Cologne braced itself against the playful class of the guests and did not give up. The Leipzig ball distributors Laimer and Dominik Szoboszlai in the center rarely had time to organize the game.
Rose responded by substituting Sweden’s Emil Forsberg (68′), who had scored against TSG Hoffenheim in the DFB Cup during the week. Cologne continued to wait for a counterattack. Baumgart brought in the fresh attacking players Jan Thielmann and Davie Selke to keep the pressure on the Leipzig defence. However, Selke was replaced with a knee injury.
1. FC Cologne – RB Leipzig: The voices
Steffen Baumgart (Coach 1. FC Cologne): “You could see with the big chances: Leipzig is always able to play such passes through the chains. We were lucky in one situation and in the other a very, very good goalkeeper. I saw a very good game, it It was fun. I’m satisfied – even without goals. Much depends on the performance.”
Marco Rose (RB Leipzig coach): “It was a respectable 0-0, both teams played their part. The plan was to take the extreme pressure away from Cologne. But our pass rate was like that of a Cologne game, i.e. less than 80 percent. We had two great chances and could have taken the lead That would have helped us: against Cologne, and in an English week. It was clear what to expect here.”