Leipzig blow chance to knock Bayern off top of Bundesliga
Berlin (AFP) –
RB Leipzig were left rueing their squandered chance to replace Bayern Munich as Bundesliga leaders on Saturday after being held to a 2-2 draw at Wolfsburg.
For the second consecutive Saturday, Leipzig, who lost 3-1 last weekend at home to Borussia Dortmund, missed out on first place.
"It's tough, you always have to deliver and when you look at the other results, three points would have been great," Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann said.
"I am sure Leverkusen and Dortmund would say the same thing," he added after rivals Bayer Leverkusen lost at Union Berlin on Friday while Dortmund drew at home to Mainz.
"There are a lot of good teams in the league and you have to go to your limits each time."
Embattled Bayern, who crashed to a 3-2 league defeat at Borussia Moenchengladbach and were then dumped out of the German Cup in midweek, host Freiburg on Sunday.
They stay a point ahead in the table.
Nagelsmann's men got off to a great start when Nordi Mukiele gave them an early lead after converting a pass from Emil Forsberg.
However, Wolfsburg roared back with goals from Wout Weghorst and Renato Steffen, whose shot clipped the chest of Leipzig defender Willi Orban on its way into the net.
Orban made amends when he tapped home Leipzig's equaliser in the second half.
- Reus misses penalty -
Fourth-placed Dortmund also dropped points as captain Marco Reus missed a late penalty in their 1-1 draw at home to strugglers Mainz, who climbed off the bottom.
"I could have decided the game. I am very, very sorry," said a crestfallen Reus, who buried his face in his shirt after firing wide from the spot 15 minutes before the final whistle.
"The disappointment is huge. We wanted to climb the table and we've missed the chance to take another step."
Defender Levin Oztunali gave Mainz the lead when he beat Dortmund goalkeeper Roman Burki from 20 metres just after half-time.
Belgium defender Thomas Meunier equalised, but Dortmund's 16-year-old striker Youssoufa Moukoko deserved credit for keeping the ball alive in the area and providing the crucial pass.
Reus fired his spot-kick wide after a foul on Meunier in the area.
Later, Stuttgart got the rub of the green on their new pitch as Silas Wamangituka converted a last-gasp penalty to earn a 2-2 draw with Moenchengladbach.
Nagelsmann compared their pitch to a potato field after Leipzig's 1-0 away win a fortnight ago and Stuttgart reacted by spending 150,000 euros ($181,000) on a new surface which was laid Monday.
Gladbach were 2-1 up deep into added time thanks to a Denis Zakaria effort, after Lars Stindl's spot-kick had been cancelled out when Nicolas Gonzalez scored Stuttgart's 3,000th Bundesliga goal.
Wamangituka converted a 96th-minute penalty after VAR ruled Stuttgart forward Sasa Kalajdzic was fouled when he backed into Gladbach defender Ramy Bensebaini.
- Union sign Dajaku -
Union are so far the only top five club to win this weekend after beating third-placed Leverkusen 1-0 in Berlin.
Leverkusen were the second big name to crash in the capital city after Dortmund lost at Union last month.
Union's home win was overshadowed by allegations of a racist slur aimed at Leverkusen midfielder Nadiem Amiri, which the hosts are investigating.
On Saturday, Union signed 19-year-old winger Leon Dajaku on loan from Bayern Munich for the rest of the season.
Werder Bremen claimed their first home victory since October with late goals in a 2-0 win at home to Augsburg.
Bremen winger Felix Agu, 21, celebrated his first league start by setting up Czech defender Theodor Gebre Selassie before sealing the points with a goal of his own.
"There is nothing better, I really enjoyed that," said Agu, who had played a total of 91 minutes on his three previous league appearances.
Hoffenheim drew 0-0 at home to Arminia Bielefeld while Cologne against Hertha Berlin finished in a goalless stalemate, with all four teams in the bottom six places.
© 2021 AFP