Leon Bailey's opener for the visitors was immediately cancelled out by Patrik Schick's strike as RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen shared a 1-1 draw at the Red Bull Arena on Sunday.
RB Leipzig 1-1 Bayer Leverkusen
Goals: 0-1 Bailey (30'), 1-1 Schick (32')
Unsurprisingly, these two attack-minded sides made a lively start at the Red Bull Arena, with the visitors taking just four minutes for Kerem Demirbay to force Peter Gulacsi into a save. At the other end, Sven Bender made a superb intervention to halt Timo Werner's mazy run just as the Germany international was about to pull the trigger. Kai Havertz - captaining the side in the absence of Lars Bender - then went close as Leverkusen caught Leipzig on the break and the visitors were rewarded for their early positivity half an hour in. This time, Havertz pulled back to Bailey for the Jamaican to prod his team in front, capping a wonderful Leverkusen move. But just two minutes later, the home side were level as Schick rose highest to nod in Christopher Nkunku's free-kick.
It was Leipzig's turn to fly out the traps fastest in the second half, with Lukas Hradecky at full stretch, diving to his left to somehow deny Nkunku's fine curling effort just minutes after kick-off. Having spent large spells of the first half on the back foot, Julian Nagelsmann's team were the early aggressors in the second period, pressing with more urgency and breaking with more regularity. But they found it difficult to break the Leverkusen resistance and, on the hour mark, both Lucas Alario and then Demiraby went close to restoring Leverkusen's lead. An unusually wayward first touch from Havertz later denied the playmaker a one-on-one with Gulacsi as Die Werkself went into the last 10 minutes the stronger outfit. Try as they might, though, neither side could find a winner, leaving Leipzig second and three points behind top-spot, while Leverkusen are a further five points back in fifth.
- Werner's 21 goals this season are only bettered by Robert Lewandowski (25), but he has scored only once in his last six Bundesliga matches.
- Nkunku now has 12 assists for the season. Only Thomas Müller (16) and Jadon Sancho (14) have provided more goals for their teammates.
- Leipzig have lost only once against Leverkusen (W4, D3) and are unbeaten in their last four games against Die Werkself (W2, D2).
- Leverkusen's opener ended Leipzig's - and Gulacsi's - run of four clean sheets in a row. With 26 goals conceded, Leipzig have the meanest defence in the division.
- Bailey's goal was his fifth of the campaign and second in his last three matches.
- Leverkusen have lost just once in 10 matches in 2020 (W8, D1) and have collected 16 points from a possible 21. If only Rückrunde results counted, Bosz's men would be third behind only Bayern Munich (19 points) and Borussia Dortmund (18).
Watch: Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann reflects on "a fair result"
Leipzig: Gulacsi – Klostermann, Upamecano, Halstenberg – Mukiele, Sabitzer (c), Forsberg, Angelino – Nkunku (Haidara 76'), Schick (Wolf 82'), Werner (Poulsen 71')
Unused subs: Mvogo, Lookman, Olmo, Jäkel
Out: Adams (calf), Ampadu (knock), Kampl (ankle), Konate (hamstring), Laimer (suspended), Orban (knee)
Coach: Julian Nagelsmann
Leverkusen: Hradecky – Tah, S. Bender, Tapsoba – Amiri, Palacios (Aranguiz 63'), Demirbay, Wendell – Havertz (c), Bailey (Diaby 71') – Alario (Bellarabi 90')
Unused subs: Özcan, Dragovic, Paulinho, Baumgartlinger, Sinkgraven, Weiser
Out: Aranguiz (ill), Volland (foot)
Coach: Peter Bosz
Watch: Leverkusen talisman Kai Havertz says the best is yet to come from him