Václav Černý scored the only goal of the game as 2015 DFB Cup winners Wolfsburg knocked out defending champions RB Leipzig. - © IMAGO/regios24
Václav Černý scored the only goal of the game as 2015 DFB Cup winners Wolfsburg knocked out defending champions RB Leipzig. - © IMAGO/regios24

Wolfsburg oust DFB Cup holders RB Leipzig in second round


Wolfsburg handed two-time defending DFB Cup champions RB Leipzig their first defeat in 14 games in the competition with a narrow 1-0 second-round triumph on Tuesday.

Wolfsburg 1-0 Leipzig
1-0 Černý 14’ (assist: Tomás)
Send off: Poulsen (56’)

As holders, Leipzig were favourites to go through prior to kick-off, especially as they had beaten Wolfsburg in four of their previous five cup meetings. However, the Wolves showed they were determined to buck that trend within the opening seconds here, as Mattias Svanberg set up Tiago Tomás, whose shot was well saved by Peter Gulácsi. The hosts did take the lead on the quarter-hour mark though, Tomás sliding a ball into the run of Václav Černý, who held off the challenge of Castello Lukeba to rifle the ball high into the net. Leipzig tried to muster a response and dominated possession, but could not find a way through a well-drilled Wolfsburg defence.

Neither side made any changes during the interval, but Leipzig boss Marco Rose was soon forced to shuffle his side around when Yussuf Poulsen was sent off for a second yellow card in the 56th minute. Jakub Kaminski could have put Wolfsburg out of sight just moments later when he collected Aster Vranckx’s pass, but his curling effort went narrowly the wrong side of the post. As the match wore on, Leipzig were forced to commit greater numbers forward in search of an equaliser, and although Loïs Openda connected with a David Raum free-kick he was unable to keep it from blazing over the crossbar. That was about as close as Leipzig came to finding the net as the Wolves saw the result to the final whistle to book their place in the last 16.

Match stats

  • Jonas Wind has had a direct hand in 11 of Wolfsburg’s 20 competitive goals in 2023/24, also scoring and assisting one each in the first round.
  • Kovač has now won 23 of his 25 DFB Cup fixtures as a coach, winning the trophy with both Eintracht Frankfurt (2018) and Bayern Munich (2019) and beating Leipzig 3-0 in the final for the latter.
  • Wolfsburg have lost seven of their last 11 DFB Cup encounters with fellow Bundesliga clubs, with three of those seven coming against Leipzig.
  • Poulsen is Leipzig’s record scorer in the DFB Cup with 12 goals, ahead of Timo Werner (11).
  • Two-time defending champions Leipzig were on a run of 13 straight wins in the DFB Cup since losing the 2020/21 final, which was also Die Roten Bullen’s only defeat in their last 10 cup ties against fellow Bundesliga clubs.
  • Leipzig have faced Wolfsburg more than any other club in their 14-year history (21) and lost only two of the last 13 competitive encounters.


Wolfsburg: Pervan – Baku (Mæhle 74’), Bornauw, Lacroix (c), Zesiger - Gerhardt, Svanberg – Černý (Paredes 65’), Vranckx (Arnold 81’), Kamiński (Majer 81’) – Tomás (Wind 74’)
Unused subs: Schulze, Cozza, Pejčinović, Jenz
Out: Casteels (abdominals), Fischer (knee), Nmecha (knee), Rogério (calf)
Coach: Niko Kovač

Leipzig: Gulácsi (c) - Henrichs, Klostermann, Castello (Simakan 73’), Raum - Xavi, Schlager (Kampl 73’), Haidara (Baumgartner (80’), Werner (Šeško 73’) – Openda (Carvalho 86’), Poulsen
Unused subs: Blaswich, Lenz, Forsberg, Seiwald
Out: Bitshiabu (knee), Olmo (shoulder), Orban (knee)
Coach: Marco Rose

As it happened!

1 - 0

(1 - 0)

DFB Pokal
Second round
Second round Volkswagen Arena
+ 7

Full time: Wolfsburg 1-0 Leipzig

DFB Cup winners in 2022 and 2023, Leipzig go out in the second round to Bundesliga rivals Wolfsburg. Václav Černý scored the only goal, while Leipzig had to play for over 30 minutes with 10 men following Yussuf Poulsen's sending off. In truth, they just weren't allowed to get going by a well-drilled Wolfsburg outfit, who march into the round of 16.
+ 6


Wind for the win, but he fires against the woodwork after being played in by Majer.
+ 3

Shoulder blow

Lacroix needs treatment after an aerial collision with Simakan in the Wolfsburg box. He looks OK, but the stoppage will surely mean longer for Wolfsburg to hold out...
+ 1

Added time

Into the first of six additional minutes. Are Wolfsburg about to knock out the holders?

Final throw of the dice

Can Liverpool loanee Fabio Carvalho make the difference? What a time it would be to get his first goal for Leipzig...


Fresh Wolfsburg legs to get this over the line. Vranckx, in particular, has worked his socks off!


Baumgartner, who - like Šeško - scored from the bench at the weekend, replaces Haidara. That's an attacking midfielder for a holding player as we move into now-or-never territory.


Three players on cards make way. Wind - with nine goals already this season - is among the players on for Wolfsburg. Rose, meanwhile, introduces young Šeško in a big to wrestle back the tie.




The Belgian meets Raum's free-kick on the volley, but can't keep it down.

Thin ice

Baku's the fourth Wolfsburg player to be booked, this time for a late challenge on Xavi. It wouldn't be a surprise if there's another sending off at this rate...

Wolfsburg change

Twenty-year-old American Kevin Paredes makes his seventh appearance of the season, and 33rd all told for the Wolfsburg seniors.


Kovač talks his way into the book after Vranckx escapes a second yellow for a rough challenge on Schlager. Lukeba is then cautioned for preventing a Wolfsburg break.


Vranckx pings a ball out to the left for Kaminski, who tears past Henrichs and Haidara. It opens up for him in a central position, but his shot is just the wrong side of the post!

Leipzig down to 10 men!

It did feel like this might happen. Booked in the first half, Poulsen loses possession on halfway before sliding in rashly on Svanberg in an attempt to win it back. The holders must now overcome a 1-0 and numerical disadvantage, if they're to stay in the cup...

End to end!

Werner brings Raum's cross under his spell, before firing over on the turn from 12 yards. Wolfsburg go up the other end, with Haidara sliding in to prevent Tomas doing more damage with Černý's pass into the box.

Vranckx into the book

The Wolfsburg midfielder is penalised after handling during a tussle with Belgian compatriot Openda.

Knocking at the door

Poulsen tries to turn Henrichs's cross goalwards, but doesn't make full contact and it goes wide. Leipzig mean business...


Almost the perfect start to the second half for Leipzig. Openda's pass deflects into the path of Schlager. He goes for goal from inside the area, but Baku gets in the way of the shot to direct the ball onto the upright!

No changes

It's as you were for both sides at the start of the second half in Wolfsburg.
+ 4

Half-time: Wolfsburg 1-0 Leipzig

Wolfsburg are 45 minutes from eliminating holders Leipzig. Černý's goal is the difference at the break, though it could, and perhaps should, have been more.
+ 2


Černý swings in the ensuing free-kick. Bornauw goes up for it, heading straight at Gulácsi. Another presentable chance not taken...
+ 2

Third booking

Schlager brings down Vranckx this time. Tetchy end to a competitive first half of DFB Cup football...

Safe hands!

Lacroix follows Poulsen into the book after impeding the Dane in a deliberate attempt to stop a Leipzig counter. Raum floats in the resultant free-kick, but it's too close to Pervan in the Wolfsburg goal.

Lonely furrow

Poulsen's the first player into the book for a foul on Vranckx. It's been a difficult half for the Leipzig striker. Might we see young Šeško in the second 45?

Tough nut to crack

Leipzig are seeing a lot of the ball in the Wolfsburg half, but they're struggling to break down this stubborn Wolfsburg defence.


Kaminski's shot following a corner is blocked by Henrichs. It falls kindly for Gerhardt, but he can only shoot straight at the goalkeeper.

Dam broken!

A first Wolfsburg goal for Černý on his ninth competitive appearance for the club. The Czech midfielder scored 13 times in the Eredivisie for Twente last term!

Openda-Xavi double act

Openda has the beating of Bornauw, but his attempted pass for Xavi is cut out by Zesiger. Those two have developed such a fantastic understanding in the Leipzig attack. Wolfsburg will do well to stop at least one of them from scoring today...

Almost a second goal!

Gulácsi and Lukeba both let Schlager's back-pass run, expecting the other to take charge of the situation. Černý pounces and has the keeper beaten with his shot, but Lukeba is able to get back and clear.


Leipzig get a lucky break as Xavi's attempted pass to Openda falls for Henrichs. He takes aim from inside the area, firing just past the upright.


Wolfsburg are in the mood as Gerhardt meets a Baku cross, only to send his effort over the bar.

Advantage Wolfsburg!

An incisive attack produces the first goal. Tomas turns away from his marker in midfield and threads a cute ball in behind Lukeba for the run of Černý, who finishes confidently to give the Wolves the lead.
Václav Černý

Openda finding his range

The Leipzig forward, with four goals in his last two Bundesliga games, fires off target from a good 20 yards. Expect his next attempt to be nearer, if not on, the mark...

Xavi concern

Xavi takes a knock to his right ankle as he jostles for the ball with Bornauw in the Wolfsburg box. The physios are on, but the Dutchman should be OK to continue.

Strong save!

Wolfsburg with a great chance inside 60 seconds as Svanberg picks off Raum's pass. He feeds Tomas in the box, but Gulácsi is able to push the striker's close-range effort clear.

Under way!

Can the holders march on? They haven't lost in the competition since losing the 2021/22 final to Dortmund...

Head-to-head record

This is the fourth cup tie between the two sides since 2019 alone, with Leipzig victorious in the last three. Wolfsburg knocked out the two-time winners in 2015, having previously lost their first meeting in the competition 3-2 in 2011, when Leipzig were in the fourth tier of German football.

Kovač's view

"I'm disappointed by the way in which we conceded the game against Augsburg. We have to do a lot better against Leipzig. They're a top side."

Rose favours continuity

"We want to get back into a certain rhythm after the recent hard-fought wins. Positive results are incredibly important, particularly when there's so many games in a short period."

More on those teams

Rose makes two changes to the Leipzig team that beat Cologne, with Peter Gulácsi starting in goal and Yussuf Poulsen coming into the attack. Janis Blaswich and Mo Simakan make way as the visitors revert to a back four. Kovač responds to Wolfsburg's 3-2 loss in Augsburg, meanwhile, by cycling in eight players: Ridle Baku, Sebastiaan Bornauw, Cedric Zesiger, Yannick Gerhardt, Václav Černý, Aster Vranckx, Jakub Kaminski and Tiago Tomas. Top scorer Jonas Wind is among the substitutes.

Wolfsburg starting XI

Pervan - Bornauw, Lacroix (c), Zesiger - Gerhardt, Vranckx - Baku, Svanberg, Kamiński, Černý - Tomás

Wolfsburg subs

Schulze, Cozza, Pejčinović, Majer, Mæhle, Wind, Jenz, Arnold, Paredes

Leipzig starting XI

Gulácsi (c) - Henrichs, Klostermann, Castello, Raum - Xavi, Schlager, Haidara, Werner - Openda, Poulsen

Leipzig subs

Blaswich, Simakan, Lenz, Forsberg, Seiwald, Baumgartner, Carvalho, Šeško, Kampl

Cup-expert Kovač

The DFB Cup has been a happy hunting ground for the Croatian. He has won 22 of his 24 matches in this competition to date, twice winning the trophy - once with Eintracht Frankfurt and once with Bayern Munich.

Battle of the talismen

Jonas Wind and Loïs Openda have been leading the line for Wolfsburg and Leipzig respectively. The former has been involved in 11 of his side's 19 goals in all competitions - including a goal and an assist in the first round of this competition - while the latter has eight Bundesliga goals this term, as many as Wind. Who will come out on top this midweek?

How they got here?

It was plain sailing in the first round for Wolfsburg, who beat TuS Makkabi Berlin 6-0. Leipzig, meanwhile, were made to work harder for their 3-2 triumph over Wehen Wiesbaden, but were ultimately in front from the seventh minute.

Wolfsburg team news

Niko Kovač, meanwhile, also has some problems to deal with. Patrick Wimmer will be unavailable after suffering an injury against Augsburg, while Koen Casteels appears to have not yet recovered from the issue that has kept him out of each of the last two Bundesliga matches. Luca Kilian and Rogério are also expected to sit this clash out.

Leipzig team news

Marco Rose was forced to take Dani Olmo off just seven minutes after had been brought on following a lengthy spell on the sidelines as Leipzig hammered Cologne. As such, the Spaniard joins Kevin Kampl, Timo Werner - who also suffered a problem versus Effzeh - Willi Orban and El Chadaille Bitshiabu on the treatment table.


These two teams have faced off 19 times thus far, and Leipzig have the upper hand. They have won on 10 occasions, compared to Wolfsburg's four, with the other five matches ending in draws. The previous three fixtures have ended in Leipzig wins, with Wolfsburg last coming out on top in August 2021 as they prevailed 1-0. Four of the five DFB Cup ties have also seen Leipzig prevail.

Watch: Wolfsburg 0-3 Leipzig - previous meeting

Leipzig were comfortable winners the last time the two sides met in February of this year.

Watch: Augsburg 3-2 Wolfsburg

Die Wölfe, meanwhile, succumbed to Augsburg away from home during Matchday 9 of the Bundesliga season.

Watch: Leipzig 6-0 Cologne

Die Roten Bullen were in fine form as they hammered Cologne last time out.


You can follow all the build-up and action from Wolfsburg's DFB Cup second-round clash with RB Leipzig right here!