RB Leipzig underpinned its ambitions for the Champions League in the last game of the 29th Bundesliga matchday with a convincing 3-0 (3-0) win over TSG Hoffenheim and restored its three-point lead over SC Freiburg.
Here you can read the game in the live ticker.
With the win, Leipzig also warmed up for the big European Cup showdown on Thursday against Atalanta Bergamo. Four days before the quarter-final second leg in the Europa League at Atalanta Bergamo, the best team in the second half of the Bundesliga season mercilessly defeated their direct rival TSG Hoffenheim 3-0 (3-0) and easily consolidated fourth place in the premier class.
After the 1-1 in the first duel with Bergamo last Thursday, star striker Christopher Nkunku (5th/according to video evidence), Marcel Halstenberg (20th) and Dominik Szoboszlai (44th) let the Saxons celebrate against TSG. In the table, Leipzig (51 points), unbeaten in twelve competitive games, have a three-point lead over fifth-placed SC Freiburg and seven over Hoffenheim in sixth place.
In front of 35,112 spectators, Tedesco changed five positions compared to the Bergamo first leg. In addition to Halstenberg, who had been plagued by injury for a long time and was called up for the first time after 323 days, Szoboszlai and Emil Forsberg, among others, replaced the frequent players Dani Olmo and Andre Silva up front. But early on, Nkunku shone once more, who was the only striker.
After the first cross, a free-kick cross from Szoboszlais, the French international first let Pavel Kaderabek out before shooting into the short corner and celebrating his 17th goal of the season. Referee Bastian Dankert initially ruled that Nkunku was offside, but retracted this after consulting video assistant Benjamin Cortus.
RB Leipzig: Halstenberg and Szoboszlai raise early
After the lead, Leipzig got Hoffenheim well under control – and remained dangerous. Many players were missing due to yellow card suspensions, corona infections and injuries. After a counterattack, the ball got through detours to Halstenberg, who had started, who aimed at the far post in the penalty area and hit it. Just before the break, Nkunku passed a cross from Mohamed Simakan to Szoboszlai, who only had to push in in the middle.
After the change, Hoffenheim, coach Sebastian Hoeneß had switched from a three-man to a four-man chain, tried to be more proactive. Leipzig counterattacked and let the guests do their thing, but they often had problems getting really dangerous in front of the RB goal.