Angelino scored late to give RB Leipzig a 1-0 win in the first leg of their UEFA Europa League semi-final tie against Glasgow Rangers.
RB Leipzig 1-0 Glasgow Rangers
Goals: 1-0 Angelino (85')
Leipzig asked all the questions of Rangers, who effectively parked the bus in a one-sided first half. Konrad Laimer was the first to try his luck, but the Austrian midfielder’s shot was blocked. The clearest opening fell to Christopher Nkunku soon after, but he failed to fully connect with Angelino’s cross and his follow-up attempt was blocked. Connor Goldson sent a header comfortably over Peter Gulacsi’s goal on one of the rare occasions Rangers ventured out of their own half. Leipzig returned fire immediately through Angelino, whose 18-yard strike was charged down.
Having barely seen the ball in an attacking sense in the first 45, Rangers went within a whisker of breaking the deadlock after the restart. Ryan Kent, who played for Leipzig’s upcoming DFB Cup final opponents Freiburg in 2017/18, cut into the box before angling a shot narrowly wide of the far post. Goldson headed another corner over moments later, prompting a fierce riposte as Nkunku stung the palms of Allan McGregor from range. Nkunku should have done better with his next effort in his current form, but blazed over with only the keeper to beat. Angelino ensured Leipzig's efforts weren't for nothing, though, as he met a half-cleared corner with a sensational 25-yard volley to give Domenico Tedesco's side the edge ahead of the return leg in Glasgow on 5 May.
- Angelino scored his fourth goal of the season, and second in the 2021/22 Europa League.
- Tedesco is overseeing only his second European campaign as a head coach.
- Leipzig are one game away from their first UEFA competition final.
- Leipzig have reached a UEFA semi-final for the second time in three seasons, having lost 3-0 to Paris Saint-Germain in the last four of the Champions League in 2019/20.
- Rangers have lost 18 of 51 meetings with German opposition.
Leipzig: Gulacsi (c) - Klostermann, Gvardiol, Halstenberg - Henrichs (Mukiele 89'), Laimer, Adams, Angelino - Olmo (Forsberg 71') - Szoboszlai (Silva 71'), Nkunku (Poulsen 89')
Unused subs: Tschauner, Martinez, Raebiger, Novoa, Lelle
Out: Haidara (knee), Kampl (suspended), Orban (suspended), Simakan (suspended)
Coach: Domenico Tedesco
Rangers: McGregor - Tavernier (c), Goldson, Bassey, Barisic - Jack (Sands 83'), Lundstram - Aribo (Arfield 83'), Kamara, Kent - Wright (Sakala 69')
Unused subs: McCrorie, McLaughlin, Diallo, S. Davis, Balogun, King, Lowry, McKinnon, Devine
Out: Hagi (knee), Helander (foot), Morelos (thigh), Ofoborh (heart), Ramsey (hamstring), Roofe (knee)
Coach: Giovanni van Bronckhorst
As it happened!
Angelino's late goal gives Leipzig a deserved edge going into the return leg in Glasgow on 5 May.
TIME ADDED ON
Fresh legs for Leipzig. Three more minutes to be played at a buoyant Red Bull Arena...
Leipzig get the breakthrough! Adams forces McGregor into a superb diving save to win a corner. Nkunku's cross is headed out as far as Angelino, who sends a bouncing volley into the net!
Angelino whips over a cross for Nkunku, who heads wide under pressure from a Rangers shirt. That's much more like it from Leipzig!
Kent drifts in off the left and arrows in a shot from range, but it's a routine stop for Gulacsi. Leipzig do not want to give the visitors too much of the ball this late in the game.
Here comes the 16-goal Silva. Leipzig's record marksman in UEFA competition, Emil Forsberg, is also on for the final 19 minutes or so. Olmo and Szoboslai, whose threat waned after the break, make way.
NKUNKU BLAZES OVER!
Leipzig should be in front. Nkunku dances through the Rangers defence, but balloons over with only McGregor to beat. That was so unlike the Frenchman!
STRAIGHT SWAP IN ATTACK
Wright's not the only player feeling it in his legs. Will Tedesco respond with fresh legs of his own?
Laimer spies an opening from the edge of the Rangers area, but his shot lacks the power to trouble McGregor. Tedesco must be thinking about introducing an out-and-out striker...
Frankfurt have retaken the lead in their semi-final first leg at West Ham - Daichi Kamada the scorer.
Leipzig's top scorer takes the Red Bulls by the horns with a fierce strike from distance that McGregor can only beat away.
RANGERS COME AGAIN
Aribo's involved again as Tavernier tries to direct one goalwards, only for Adams to block. Goldson meets Barisic's ensuing delivery, heading off target as he did in the first half. Leipzig need to wake up!
Rangers break as Aribo finds ex-Freiburg man Ryan Kent. He jinks into the box, before firing wide of the far post. The visitors almost ahead out of nowhere.
It's as you were at the Red Bull Arena. Can Leipzig turn possession into goals?
GOALLESS AT THE BREAK
Leipzig, Leipzig and more Leipzig - but still no goals at the halfway point in this Europa League semi-final first leg.
STICK OR TWIST?
Leipzig continue to enjoy the lion's share of possession, but their passes aren't sticking right now. There are pros to this set-up, but it wouldn't be a surprise if Tedesco introduced a target man after the break, strikers Silva and Poulsen being the chief candidates. Rangers have come to park the bus.
Leipzig respond with a smooth attacking move. Szoboszlai and Olmo combine to tee up Angelino, whose shot from the edge of the area is blocked by Tavernier.
Goldson meets a Barisic cross this time, but clears the Leipzig goal comfortably with his header.
FIRST SHOT IN ANGER
Rangers with their first sniff of the Leipzig goal as Tavernier sends over a free-kick. Wright connects, but Gvardiol is alive to the danger and blocks to safety.
Leipzig have enjoyed 63 percent possession so far. Rangers have barely been out of their own half.
Leipzig come again as Nkunku and Laimer have goal-bound shots charged down. In the form he's in, Nkunku will be kicking himself he didn't do more with Angelino's pin-point cross. Still, it's backs to the wall for Rangers - how long before a crack appears?
There's simply no let-up for Rangers as Laimer barrels into the final third, before sending a cross into the arms of McGregor. Can Leipzig strike while the iron is hot?
The Tedesco press has Rangers hemmed in. The Scottish side are effectively five at the back at the moment. They did not bank on this fluid three-man Leipzig attack.
Nkunku on the attack now, but Bassey intervenes. Leipzig's nimble front line is already asking questions of the Rangers defence.
Frankfurt have already scored at West Ham, and Leipzig are on the prowl here. Laimer's 20-yard shot is blocked, though. Let's have that all-German final, lads!
Leipzig assistant coach Andreas Hinkel spent three years on the books of Glasgow Celtic as a player, so certainly knows a thing or two about Old Firm rivals Rangers. "We’ll speak to the team again in detail about Rangers, but it's well known that Scottish teams are more physical than German sides," he warned. "They have an incredible mentality. That paired with their footballing elements like their counter attacking game or their press makes them a very difficult opponent. It will be an interesting game."
ANGELINO FEELING POSITIVE"It’s not going to be an easy game against any team at this level. The teams that people describe as smaller sides can still shock the bigger teams and knock them out of the competition. We’ve had a great run recently and the good mood in the team remains intact. Our team has a great amount of will and we have real quality. We’re in great shape."
WATCH: HOW TEDESCO TURNED LEIPZIG AROUNDLeipzig were 11th and had just been knocked out of the Champions League when Tedesco replaced Jesse Marsch as coach. They've since climbed to fourth in the Bundesliga, reached their third DFB Cup final in four years and their second European semi in 24 months.
MORE ON THOSE TEAMS
Josko Gvardiol returns to the Leipzig side after being rested in the defeat to Union Berlin. He has Marcel Halstenberg and Lukas Klostermann for company in defence, with Willi Orban and Mo Simakan suspended. Midfielder Kevin Kampl also serves a one-match ban, so Tyler Adams comes in. Playmaker Dominik Szoboszlai is a surprise inclusion in place of centre-forward Andre Silva. As for Rangers, Glen Kamara and Scott Wright replace injured pair Aaron Ramsey and Kemar Roofe.
LEIPZIG STARTING LINE-UP
Gulacsi (c) - Klostermann, Gvardiol, Halstenberg - Henrichs, Laimer, Adams, Angelino - Olmo - Szoboszlai, Nkunku
Tschauner, Martinez, Poulsen, Forsberg, Mukiele, Silva, Raebiger, Novoa, Lelle
RANGERS STARTING LINE-UP
McGregor - Tavernier (c), Goldson, Bassey, Barisic - Jack, Lundstram - Aribo, Kamara, Kent - Wright
McCrorie, McLaughlin, Diallo, S. Davis, Sands, Balogun, Sakala, Arfield, King, Lowry, McKinnon, Devine
Interestingly, Leipzig beat Rangers 4-0 at the Red Bull Arena back in January 2017 in a friendly game. Yussuf Poulsen was on target twice in that fixture.
ROAD TO THE SEMIS II
Rangers advanced to a Europa League play-off having finished second in their group behind Lyon. The Scottish Premier League team knocked out Borussia Dortmund over two legs before advancing past Crvena Zvezda and Braga to reach the semis.
ROAD TO THE SEMIS
After finishing third in their Champions League group, Leipzig overcame Real Sociedad in a Europa League knockout round playoff before receiving a bye against Spartak Moscow in the round of 16. The Saxony-based side then ousted Atalanta in the last eight.
NKUNKU POWER !He's already amassed 30 goals in all competitions this season, including 10 in Europe. Nkunku also hit a double as Leipzig beat Atalanta 2-0 to reach the semi-finals. Rangers have their work cut out trying to stop the France international tonight.
LEIPZIG ON FIRE
Tonight's hosts have been racing along since Tedesco took charge back in December. Along with challenging for a top-four Bundesliga's finish, Leipzig are the only Bundesliga club still in contention for two trophies this season, having also reached the final of the DFB Cup.
TEDESCO PREDICTS CLOSE CONTESTLeipzig boss, Domenico Tedesco, says that he feels this semi-final tie could go all the way, with the last four sides evenly matched. "I think this game will be decided in the second leg, even if we'll do everything we can in front of our home fans in order to go to Ibrox Stadium with a good result," the tactician explained.
WELCOME ONE AND ALL
It's a European extravaganza tonight with RB Leipzig beginning their quest to reach the UEFA Europa League final. Scottish side, Rangers, stand in the way, with the Bundesliga team set for an interesting challenge in tonight's last four, first leg encounter.