Julian Nagelsmann ahead of #TSGRBL: “We want to return to winning ways”
Julian Nagelsmann on…
… the opponent: Leipzig are having a brilliant season. They’re performing well in the Champions League and have couple of really strong players I don’t need to mention by name. They’re very strong offensively and in the past season we competed in two high-quality games. I’m expecting no different on Saturday.
… the squad: Ermin Bicakcic played for the U23s during the week, but he’s not 100% match fit yet. He can’t fully stretch his knee but it is strong enough to play. Benjamin Hübner trained this week but the Leipzig game will come too early. Sandro Wagner and Serge Gnabry are also a doubt for the weekend. Sandro has been having problems with his abdominal muscles for a couple of weeks, while Serge’s thigh injury has returned.
… the sporting situation I: We want to return to winning ways. A bit of realism is necessary, too: it’s not about being optimistic or pessimistic, rather we need to realistically assess our performances. Last season’s extraordinary performance doesn’t count anymore. We need to do more if we want to be successful.
… the sporting situation II: The impression I got from training on Wednesday was good. We worked on our one-on-one battles and the players showed real energy. The team has created a lot of chances in our recent games, but the composure was often lacking at the crucial moment. If we keep on putting ourselves into the right positions, we will eventually score goals.
RBL and TSG played for the first time last season. In the first game of the season, the two teams drew 2-2. Marcel Sabitzer scored in that game but will be missing on Saturday because of a shoulder injury. RBL won the second game 2-1 with Timo Werner and Marcel Sabitzer cancelling out Nadiem Amiri’s opener.
The opponent’s form
Last time out RBL defeated Bremen 2-0 at the Red Bull Arena. Before then they brushed past Monaco, putting four goals past the French side away from home to keep their knockout stage hopes alive.
The key duel
Leipzig put in the most tackles (224) per game of any team in the Bundesliga, winning 51.6% of these. On Bayern win more. RBL employ an aggressive pressing game and look to break quickly on the counter. There are two ways to counteract that. TSG will either have to take Leipzig on in the one-to-one duels or pass around their pressing.