Bundesliga Preview | RB Leipzig vs Union Berlin: Timo Werner & Co. face difficult task

On Saturday, Union Berlin will be looking to either close the gap to Bayern Munich or overtake them, while RB Leipzig will want to close the gap on Union as fourth plays second at the Red Bull Arena. 

Leipzig have only lost one Bundesliga game since Marco Rose took charge but last weekend they played out a frustrating 0-0 draw with FC Köln. They only recorded two shots on target and had a goal from Timo Werner ruled out for offside. 

Union also find themselves on an unbeaten run after a shaky end to the year. Last weekend they left it late once again to beat Mainz 2-1. Having taken the lead through Kevin Behrens, Union had looked as if they had thrown away the win when Marcus Ingvartsen equalised for Mainz but it what has become a common occurrence as of late for Union they scored late on with a goal from Jordan to close the gap to Bayern to only one point. 

Since Rose took charge, Dominik Szoboszlai has been the player to benefit most from his arrival scoring three times and assisting eight as well. The Hungarian has especially stepped up in the new year due to the injury to Christopher Nkunku, and with the Frenchman reportedly joining Chelsea in the summer it may be a sign of things to come for Leipzig and Szoboszlai next season. 

The challenge for Leipzig will be getting past the Union’s defence. They currently have the second best defence in the league with Robin Knoche being the stand out player in their defence this season. The 30-year-old has played in all but one game so far, missing Union’s 2-0 loss to Eintracht Frankfurt. Knoche has been the stable of the defence and has also allowed the likes of Diogo Leite and Danilho Doekhi the opportunity to shine as well. 

One player that won’t be featuring is Leipzig’s Willi Orban. The defender is not injured but is instead donating stem cells as he has turned out to be a match for someone who has blood cancer. Orban had the procedure on Wednesday but due to the recovery period he will miss the Union game. The 30-year-old had previously featured in every single game for Leipzig this season. 

The last time these two teams met, Union won 2-1 in Köpenick, Sheraldo Becker and Jordan goals gave Union the lead before Orban scored a late consolation.

GGFN | Jack Meenan

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