RB Leipzig’s rise to the top of European football is stunning


Here’s a pub quiz question which may well come up next summer. Which German team won the Bundesliga but were not formed until 2009? The answer could be RB Leipzig and it is fair to say that if you hadn’t heard of them before you most probably have now, because currently they are sitting in first place in the Bundesliga.

RB Leipzig have been in one word incredible. In a league that features one of the greatest clubs in the world in Bayern Munich, RB Leipzig are not only in first place but after 11 games are still undefeated. The current record reads won 8 and drawn 3. One of those wins include victory over the impressive Borussia Dortmund who have been excellent in the Champions League this season and currently lie in 3rd place a cool six points adrift of the leaders.

Even the mighty Bayern have had to yield to the club as they have seen a 3 point gap appear. So what gives, how come RB Leipzig have seemingly come from nowhere to be everywhere?

Last season the club known affectionately as Die Bullen- translated in English – the bulls were playing in Bundesliga 2. This is a league which they eventually won and thus promotion was guaranteed. But nobody expected this sort of start.

The club are led by coach Ralph Hasenhuttl who is from Austria and started his playing career as a forward at Grazer before moving to Austria Wien. He played for six seasons in Germany but never made it big and played out his twilight years at Bayern Munich II.

For Austria he was capped just 8 times and last played for his country in 1994. His management career started in 2007 with some minor clubs before he headed back to Germany and took charge of Inglostadt. He helped the team clinch promotion to the Bundesliga and the team have been solid since. In the summer his impressive work was rewarded to take newly promoted RB Leipzing further and he has impressed with a win rate of 66%.

There a lot of ingredients that have made Leipzig look so good. Hasenhuttl has deployed a mean defence, the team have conceded just 9 goals this season and he has taken the model he developed at Inglostadt to start from the back. One believes Hasenhuttl would be a popular figure in Serie A.

The team is led at the back by 31-year-old Marvin Compper a natural leader and the club can rely on Swedish sensation Emil Forsberg who already has five goals this season.

Hasenhuttl is also very animated on the touchline and is quite a character and it’s obvious to see that he is the man of the moment right now. There is a hunger and a desire to do well and it will be very interesting to see how far he can take his team after such an impressive start to the campaign.

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