It was, if nothing else, an entertaining return to the BayArena for Kevin Kampl. In his first appearance at his former stomping ground since switching Bayer Leverkusen for RB Leipzig at the end of the summer transfer window, the Slovenia international played his part in a pulsating Bundesliga encounter: a 2-2 draw with penalties, brilliant goals, a red card, and talking points aplenty.
Having taken the lead twice, however, through penalties from Timo Werner and Emil Forsberg, Kampl's new Leipzig teammates twice conspired to snatch a draw from the jaws of victory, allowing Leon Bailey and Kevin Volland to level at the end of the first and second half respectively.
Speaking after the game, Kampl discussed his frustration at the draw and Leipzig's recent upward curve, before turning his focus to the Easterners' trip to Monaco in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday night.
Watch: Leipzig are continuing to prove that last season's success was far from a flash in the pan!
Question: Kevin Kampl, you and your Leipzig teammates came away from Bayer Leverkusen with a draw. Are you happy with the point?
Kevin Kampl: To be honest, we're not very happy because there was more out there for us. We took the lead twice against a very good Leverkusen side, but we lost the initiative a little bit in the second half after going ahead again because Bayer played better. We were a little bit all over the place; we weren't calm enough and played too passively. Leverkusen picked up on the fact that something hadn't quite clicked and they deservedly scored the equaliser.
Question: What did you do wrong, then?
Kampl: We needed to be calmer and score the third goal. That would have killed the game. It's tough to take right now, but a point is better than nothing. A draw in Leverkusen isn't the worst result: Die Werkself are good at home and haven't lost yet at the BayArena. They're not really where they belong in the table, in terms of their quality.
Question: How pleased are you with your role in the team since arriving in Leipzig?
Kampl: It's been just over two months, and I'm very pleased. I've played a lot of games, even though I wasn't with Leipzig for pre-season. The boys welcomed me really well and I feel very comfortable. It feels as though I've been here for much longer than I have. I think we can look forward to some good times.
Question: In terms of football, and tactics, was the move from Leverkusen to Leipzig this summer a big change?
Kampl: No. You could see in this game that both sides try to play in a similar high-pressing style. When two teams like that face off, the game often doesn't flow that well. You could see that when the sides played last season, too. I think we're on the right track, though, because we're learning quickly from our mistakes.
Question: You finished second last term, and you're in second place again at the moment. Do you think that correctly reflects the current lie of the land?
Kampl: We'd have had a bit more breathing space on the chasing pack if we'd won in Leverkusen, so that's a bit of a shame. Anyway, we're still second, and we've got some big games between now and Christmas. We want to take as many points from those as possible. We're very much on the right track as a team.
Question: Did you expect that a side fighting on several fronts – domestically and internationally – would cope with that challenge so well? There are plenty of examples of teams who haven't dealt with that so well.
Kampl: There were certainly plenty of people who assumed before the season that we'd implode and not deal with it, but we didn't let that affect us. As a group, we just try to give it our all and develop from every game – whether it's a win or a defeat. That's our main strength.
Question: You've been sporting different coloured hair of late. Is it the grey Robert Lewandowski look?
Kampl: No! (Laughing) I change my blond hair every few months. Perhaps he got it from me!
Question: What will you be taking from this game into the Champions League meeting with Monaco in France on Tuesday?
Kampl: We need to switch off from the Bundesliga now and get back into Champions League mode. We need to give that game everything, because we have to win. That also means, though, that we don't have anything to lose.
Tobias Gonscherowski reporting from Leverkusen