Holy Shnikes, Fox hits the jackpot with this one
Even though this game meant nothing, with Bayern already clinching their fifth championship in a row two weeks ago in their pasting of Wolfsburg, and Leipzig guaranteed a direct spot in the Champions League, it was a no-brainer that a game between first and second of the Bundesliga should be broadcast on the Fox network channel. Wow, did they ever make a good choice!
A nine goal extravaganza, with not one, but two injury time goals by Bayern to turn the game on its head. This may have been the most entertaining game of the entire season.
Not much Tom Starke could do
The backup to the backup actually had a pretty good game, despite the four goals allowed. A header into the upper 90, a penalty kick, a deflected shot, and a one-on-one that was sneaked through his legs weren’t his fault, and he had a couple of nice saves that kept Bayern in the game. It’s only fitting that he didn’t get saddled with that loss.
Can Leipzig repeat this next season?
Many don’t like RB Leipzig, especially traditionalists, because of how they got to where they are. A corporate overlord — Red Bull — bought the rights to a fifth division side in 2009, pumped huge amounts of money into it, and was able to propel them to the top German league in span of seven years, in the process securing UEFA Champions League play for next season.
But, you have to give them respect for not just going out and buying big names. The money provided has been invested wisely, almost exclusively in young players, and the product on the field is very attractive, playing a high-energy, high pressing, attacking style of football. The big question is, can they maintain this? Will they not only be able to keep their key players — Keita, Werner, Poulsen, for example — but will they be able to stock up their roster to be able to handle the extra burden of European competition? The offseason will give us some clues.
First conceded goal off a header
A very surprising statistic, considering that Bayern’s defense gets dinged for being weak in the air and on set plays like corners, but Sabitzer’s surprise score in the second minute was the first — and only — header that the team gave up all season in the Bundesliga.
This could be the beginning of a beautiful
A lot of people dismissed RB Leipzig’s challenge to the established Bundesliga dominance of FC Bayern, even after a spectacular Hinrunde laid down by the newcomers. Some pointed to the 3-0 dismantling by Bayern at the Allianz Arena in December as a sign that the hype had been overblown — the stumbles over the last month or two, when they had a chance to close the gap on Bayern, didn’t help either.
But the clear victory for the Reds was overshadowed by the fact that Emil Forsberg’s moment of stupidity decided that game, and we didn’t see a fair comparison. Today’s game was probably a little closer to what we expected, even if neither team really had anything but pride to play for.
If Leipzig can keep this team together, and add a couple of key additions, the duel at the top between Bayern and Dortmund could become a three-way fight for the title.