Leipzig go top in Germany ahead of Bayern, Dortmund showdown

·2-min read
Marcel Sabitzer converts the penalty which sealed RB Leipzig's 2-0 home win over Freiburg on Saturday
Marcel Sabitzer converts the penalty which sealed RB Leipzig's 2-0 home win over Freiburg on Saturday

RB Leipzig went back to the top of the Bundesliga table on Saturday with a 3-0 home win over Freiburg before Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund clash in the evening showdown.

Defender Ibrahima Konate fired home Leipzig's opener before midfielder Marcel Sabitzer added their second goal with a 70th-minute penalty.

Manchester City loanee Angelino claimed Leipzig's third with a stunning free-kick which curled over the Freiburg wall just before the final whistle.

The home win put Leipzig top, a point ahead of Bayern and Dortmund who meet later at Signal Iduna Park.

"We really deserved the win - we were very, very good in the first-half," said Leipzig head coach Julian Nagelsmann.

He was especially pleased with Konate's opening goal from a towering cross before winger Christopher Nkunku, who scored in the mid-week win over Paris Saint Germain, won the penalty which Sabitzer converted after the VAR scrutinised the decision.

"We have trained a lot from set pieces," said Nagelsmann.

"It certainly wasn't an obvious penalty, but if the VAR says it was, then it must have been," he added after Nkunku went down after the slightest of touches from Freiburg defender Nicolas Hoefler.

Union Berlin climbed to fourth with a 5-0 home thrashing of strugglers Arminia Bielefeld.

Former Germany striker Max Kruse helped set up Union's first three goals, then converted a late penalty.

After just three minutes, Japan winger Keita Endo scored his first goal for Union when he swept home Sheraldo Becker's final pass after Kruse's superb long pass. 

Endo went off with an injury soon after, but Union kept up the pressure as Kruse set up the next two goals for centre-back Robert Andrich and winger Becker.

Kruse, 32, capped an outstanding display by converting a penalty before Cedric Teuchert, a right wing replacement for Becker, grabbed Union's late fourth goal.

At the other end of the table, bottom side Mainz were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Schalke, who sit one place above them and have now gone 23 games without a league win dating back to January.

After Daniel Brosinski and Jean-Philippe Mateta converted penalties for Mainz, Mark Uth pulled a goal back for Schalke who were 2-1 down late on.

Schalke took a deserved point back to Gelsenkirchen when Mainz defender Jeremiah St. Juste turned the ball into his own net eight minutes from time.

After five games without a win, Hertha Berlin roared back with a 3-0 win in the fog at Augsburg.

Forwards Matheus Cunha, Dodi Lukebakio and Krzysztof Piatek, who cost Hertha 24 million euros ($28 million) from AC Milan in January, got on the scoresheet as Augsburg's defence crumbled.