VfB Stuttgart and RB Leipzig couldn’t be separated at the Mercedez-Benz Arena after a 0-0 stalemate. Both sides had good chances to break the deadlock but poor finishing and resolute defending stood in the way.
Leipzig showed more initiative and willingness to take all three points, but both managers will ultimately be satisfied with a point. Stuttgart edge further away from relegation danger while Leipzig avoid defeat as they continue to juggle Bundesliga and Europa League commitments.
Cautious first half
It took 25 minutes before the first chance, Daniel Ginczek and Dennis Aogo having their shots blocked before Christian Gentner’s effort was saved by Peter Gulácsi. The game heated up with some physical challenges and Timo Werner on the receiving end of some vicious verbals on his return to Stuttgart.
Leipzig had to wait until injury time to fashion a good chance as Naby Keita slid the ball through to Timo Werner who was unable to connect.
Hasenhüttl makes first move
Ralph Hasenhüttl replaced Ademola Lookman with Bruma at half-time and the visitors started the second half well. Bernardo’s cross found an unmarked Yussuf Poulsen but his shot was weak and straight at Ron-Robert Zieler. Diego Demme then found Poulsen once more but Zeiler did well to intercept.
Stuttgart then had two great chances to score. Ginczek saw his effort blocked before finding Gentner in a great position, but Ibrahima Konaté was there to provide a crucial block. Emil Forsberg then replaced Poulsen with Marcel Sabitzer joining Werner up front.
Benjamin Pavard almost turned the ball into his own net before Tayfun Korkut made his first move, Chadrac Akolo coming on for Erik Thommy. Hasenhüttl then made his final change with Jean-Kévin Augustin replacing Werner.
The closing stages were frantic with both sides going for the win, Mario Gomez heading Emiliano Insúa’s cross wide. Leipzig responded as Keita’s shot was deflected wide before Willy Orban headed over from the resulting corner.
Korkut made two defensive substitutions late on which exemplified his feelings towards the game, Marcin Kaminski replacing Ascacibar and Orel Mangala coming on for Ginczek as the game cruised towards its conclusion.
By Matthew Marshall.