Timo Werner is in the kind of form that could help RB Leipzig top UEFA Champions League Group H ahead of Lyon, Benfica and Zenit. - © DFL
Timo Werner is in the kind of form that could help RB Leipzig top UEFA Champions League Group H ahead of Lyon, Benfica and Zenit. - © DFL
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UEFA Champions League Group G: what RB Leipzig should look out for against Benfica, Lyon and Zenit Saint Petersburg

RB Leipzig have Benfica, Lyon and Zenit Saint Petersburg for company in UEFA Champions League Group H, but what do Julian Nagelsmann's side need to watch out for in Europe in the coming months?

bundesliga.com takes a closer look...

RB Leipzig

How they got there

Leipzig qualified for the Champions League for the second time in three seasons, after finishing third in the 2018/19 Bundesliga standings - 10 points behind second-placed Borussia Dortmund and 12 adrift of champions Bayern Munich.

Key player

Timo Werner has topped the Leipzig scoring charts in each of Die Roten Bullen's three seasons in the Bundesliga, and the Germany striker has flown out of the traps under Nagelsmann in 2019/20.

Only Bayern's Robert Lewandowski has found the net more often after three league matches (six compared to five), but it's not just Werner's finishing that makes him such an asset. He has the pace and work rate to bring opposition defenders to their knees.

Aims in the competition

To get out of the group. After that, anything is possible...

Watch: Timo Werner's Bundesliga mixtape

Lyon

Dates Leipzig play them
Wednesday 2 October: Leipzig 0-2 Lyon (Matchday 2)
Tuesday 10 December: Lyon vs. Leipzig (Matchday 6)

How they got there

Lyon booked their ticket to the Champions League proper, courtesy of a second successive third-placed finish in Ligue 1.

Key player

Memphis Depay more than played his part. Only Angel Di Maria (Paris Saint-Germain, 11) and Teji Savanier (Nimes, 14) produced more assists than the Netherlands left winger (10), whose ill-fated stint in the English Premier League with Manchester United must be a distant memory.

The Dutchman's flying form has continued into 2019/20 - Depay has a joint-league-leading four goals after four matches - but Leipzig pose an altogether different breed of resistance in the collective form of right-siders Lukas Klostermann and Marcel Sabitzer, American midfield forager Tyler Adams and the deceptively quick man mountain that is centre-back Dayot Upamecano.

Leipzig's path to victory

Of all the teams that advanced to the round of 16 in last season's Champions League, Lyon conceded the most goals (11).

The French club's expansive style leaves them extremely susceptible to the counter - and there aren't many clubs who break with such eye-watering force as Leipzig.

If Alejandro Grimaldo (No.3) couldn't find a way past Leipzig in the 2017 Emirates Cup, what are his chances like two years on? Not any easier, that's for sure! - imago/Action Plus

Benfica

Dates Leipzig play them
Tuesday 17 September: Benfica 1-2 Leipzig (Matchday 1)
Wednesday 27 November: Leipzig vs. Benfica (Matchday 5)

How they got there

Benfica secured Champions League football after claiming their 37 Portuguese Liga title with a two-point swing over nearest challengers and defending champions, Porto.

Key player

Alejandro Grimaldo was one of Benfica's standout performers, chipping in with four league goals and 12 assists from left-back. The former Barcelona La Masia academy graduate ranks among the most coveted players in his position Europe-wide, but he'll have a job on trying to outwit Germany international right-back Klostermann. The Spaniard will also have tenacious Leipzig winger Sabitzer to contend with.

Julian Nagelsmann faced Memphis Depay (c.) and Lyon whilst in charge of Hoffenheim in last season's Champions League. - 2018 Getty Images

Leipzig's path to victory

Benfica lost 5-1 away to Bayern and 2-0 in the reverse fixture in last season's group stage. Their only wins came against Greece's AIK, but that was before they lost star attacker Joao Felix to Atletico Madrid in the summer.

The Portugal prodigy's quality was severely missed as Bruno Lage's men went down 2-0 to title rivals Porto on Matchday 3 of the 2019/20 league campaign, and if that's a barometer of where the club are at, they could be in for two very long nights against Nagelsmann's cut-throat Bundesliga leaders.

Familiar Faces

Haris Seferovic spent three seasons in the Bundesliga with Eintracht Frankfurt, prior to his summer 2017 move to Benfica. The Switzerland international scored 16 times in 86 Bundesliga appearances, and also netted the decisive away goal in the 2015/2016 relegation play-off against Bundesliga 2 outfit Nuremberg to secure Eintracht's top-flight status.

Haris Seferovic (l.) couldn't prevent Benfica from falling to a 4-2 aggregate defeat to former club Eintracht Frankfurt in the 2018/19 UEFA Europa League quarter-finals. - 2019 Getty Images

Zenit Saint Petersburg 

Dates Leipzig play them
Wednesday 23 October: Leipzig vs. Zenit (Matchday 3)
Tuesday 5 November: Zenit vs. Leipzig (Matchday 4)

How they got there

Zenit won their fifth Russian Premier League title in 2018/19, ending a three-year absence from the Champions League.

Key player

The Lions have since acquired the services of Brazilian winger Malcom, who scored four goals in 24 appearances for Barcelona last season, but has been hampered by hip problems in Russia.

Fully fit or not, the left-footed right winger with a hint of Arjen Robben about his game will hardly relish going toe-to-toe with Leipzig and Germany left-back Marcel Halstenberg.

Malcolm first caught the eye at Bordeaux, before moving to Zenit via a one-season stint at Barcelona. - imago images / Russian Look

Leipzig's path to victory

Zenit are second in the current Russian Premier League standings, but with 10 goals to show for their first eight matches, are not a patch on Leipzig in the final third.

If Leipzig - with nine goals in three league games - play to their strengths, they should have little trouble in shutting out and dispatching arguably the weakest team in the group - even on the road in Russia.

Familiar Faces

Slovakia international midfielder Robert Mak spent four years in Germany with Nuremberg. The former Manchester City youth player registered six goals and five assists in 76 Bundesliga appearances.