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Super subs steal the points for Union Berlin against RB Leipzig


Union Berlin substitutes Sven Michel and Kevin Behrens snatched victory from the jaws of defeat against RB Leipzig at the Red Bull Arena.

RB Leipzig 1-2 Union Berlin
Goals: 1-0 Poulsen (46'), 1-1 Michel 86' (assist: Becker), 1-2 Behrens 89' (assist: Michel)

Emil Forsberg was rewarded for his midweek winner from the bench in Leipzig's DFB Cup semi-final against Union with a place in the starting line-up. The Swede was one of six changes made by head coach Domenico Tedesco, resulting in a somewhat disjointed first-half display. Union played their part in upsetting Leipzig's flow with a dogged defensive display that prevented the hosts from registering a single shot on goal. At the other end, Taiwo Awoniyi and Grischa Prömel forced Peter Gulacsi into a pair of routine blocks, while Christopher Trimmel fired against the crossbar with a swerving 20-yard strike on the stroke of half-time.

Leipzig redressed the balance and then some within minutes of the restart by scoring with their first effort on Frederik Ronnow's goal. Christopher Nkunku collected a through-ball from Angelino and sent over a cross that Prömel headed straight out to Poulsen. It was slightly behind the Dane, who had two defenders blocking his view, but that didn't stop him thundering an exquisite first-time finish into the bottom corner. Nordi Mukiele fired against the inside of Ronnow's right-hand post, but two Union subs turned the game on its head. After stooping to level from Becker's near-post cross, Michel back-heeled for Behrens to sweep in a dramatic winner as Union exacted their revenge.

Match stats

  • Michel scored his seventh Bundesliga goal, and second since joining Union in January.
  • Leipzig have scored a league-high 36 goals since the winter break.
  • Poulsen scored his 40th Bundesliga goal on his 162nd appearance in the German top tier.
  • Forsberg made his 255th competitive appearance for Leipzig, and 150th in the Bundesliga.
  • Urs Fischer oversaw his 155th competitive match as Union coach. His record reads: W64, D46, L45.
  • Union won a league game for the first time in Leipzig, at the fifth time of asking.

Watch: Sven Michel on 'soul-stirring' comeback


Leipzig: Gulacsi (c) - Simakan, Orban, Halstenberg - Mukiele (Henrichs 83'), Adams, Kampl (Laimer 63'), Angelino - Forsberg (Olmo 63') - Poulsen (Silva 64'), Nkunku (Szoboszlai 75')
Unused subs: Tschauner, Martinez, Gvardiol, Novoa
Out: Haidara (knee), Klostermann (not included)
Coach: Domenico Tedesco

Union: Ronnow - Jaeckel, Knoche, Heintz (Michel 85') - Khedira - Trimmel (Ryerson 76'), Prömel (c), Schäfer (Voglsammer 68'), Gießelmann (Oczipka 76') - Becker, Awoniyi (Behrens 85')
Unused subs: Luthe, Öztunali, Haraguchi, Möhwald
Out: Baumgartl (suspended)
Coach: Urs Fischer