RB Leipzig

Leipzig's scorer Willi Orban, center, and his teammates celebrate their side's 2nd goal during the German Bundesliga soccer match between RB Leipzig and Hertha BSC Berlin in Leipzig, Germany, Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
AP Photo/Michael Sohn

Leipzig beats ‘Gladbach 2-1, cuts Bayern’s Bundesliga lead

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BERLIN (AP) Leipzig held on for a 2-1 win at Borussia Moenchengladbach to cut Bayern Munich’s lead in the Bundesliga to five points on Sunday.

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Emil Forsberg scored one and set up another for the promoted side to end its two-game losing streak and stay on course for Champions League qualification with its 14th win of the season.

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`Gladbach `keeper Yann Sommer pulled off a brilliant fingertip save to deny Marcel Sabitzer early on, but he was powerless to stop Forsberg from breaking the deadlock after half an hour played.

Sabitzer and Timo Werner played their way through the static `Gladbach defense and Werner laid the ball off for the Sweden midfielder to fire inside the bottom left corner.

The home side was given a lifeline when Marvin Compper brought down Lars Stindl and referee Felix Zwayer pointed to the spot, but Peter Gulacsi saved Thorgan Hazard‘s penalty before the break.

More poor defending allowed Werner grab the second 10 minutes after the break, firing inside the far post after Forsberg played him through.

Jannik Vestergaard pulled one back with a powerful header from a corner to set up an exciting finale. However, six minutes of injury time were not enough for an equalizer.

Leipzig had kicked off to a chorus of whistles from the home fans, who then mostly stayed silent till the 19th minute in protest against the visiting side. Huge banners in the north stand said “Traditional club since 1900” – an apparent protest against Leipzig, founded in 2009 when Austrian energy-drink billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz rebranded a fifth-tier team with his company’s livery before financing its steady promotion through the lower leagues.

COLOGNE 1, SCHALKE 1

Cologne stopped Schalke’s progress but the point was enough for the visiting side to overtake `Gladbach on goal difference in 10th.

Alessandro Schoepf got the visitors off to a flying start in the second minute with the help of the left post, and Leon Goretzka hit the post after half an hour with the home side still struggling to get into the game.

But Anthony Modeste equalized before the break with a fine strike inside the far post, and might even have scored again just minutes later, when his hesitation allowed Benedikt Hoewedes get back and clear.

Guido Burgstaller came closest to a winner for Schalke in the second half, his shot just wide of the far post after beating the goalkeeper.

Dortmund investigating 61 fans after trouble at Leipzig game

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 22:   Borussia Dortmund fans show their support during the UEFA Champions League Group F match between Arsenal and  Borussia Dortmund at Emirates Stadium on October 22, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)
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DORTMUND, Germany (AP) Borussia Dortmund has identified 61 fans suspected of being involved with offensive and defamatory banners displayed during the Bundesliga game against Leipzig.

The suspects face sanctions that could include stadium bans, club expulsion, the cancellation of season tickets and possible civil charges, depending on the seriousness of the violations, Dortmund said Friday on its website.

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They were identified with the help of police who opened 32 preliminary investigations against supporters caught up in the violence outside the stadium on Feb. 4. Dortmund said that could rise to 40 or 50 in the coming weeks. The individuals will also face sanctions on a case-by-case basis after a club hearing.

Dortmund’s game at home on Saturday against Wolfsburg is subject to a partial stadium closure affecting almost 25,000 fans because of the abusive banners against Leipzig and for disturbances at several other games this season. The club was also fined 100,000 euros ($106,000).

“We feel a collective punishment against Dortmund fans and its ultra scene is counterproductive and ineffective,” said Dortmund, Germany’s second biggest club with about 145,000 members.

The club had agreed on Monday to close the Westfalenstadion’s south stand despite misgivings that innocent fans were also affected.

In Friday’s statement, the club said it was aware of its social responsibility and that it remains engaged in favor of integration and against violence and discrimination.

“We assure all those who were injured, insulted and disappointed on February 4 that we will continue to do all we can to punish the culprits and prevent a repeat of such incidents,” Dortmund said.

The club welcomed the German soccer federation’s nationwide stadium ban issued against 88 Dortmund supporters found armed with fighting gear and flares in Darmstadt last Saturday.

“The BVB (Dortmund) made the case for rigorous punishment,” the club said.

Dortmund ‘deeply regrets’ violence against Leipzig fans

LISBON, PORTUGAL - OCTOBER 18: Borussia Dortmund fans show their support during the UEFA Champions League match between SC Sporting and Borussia Dortmund at Estadio Jose Alvalade on October 18, 2016 in Lisbon, Lisboa. (Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images)
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DORTMUND, Germany (AP) — Borussia Dortmund “deeply regrets” attacks against Leipzig supporters including women and children before the sides’ Bundesliga game on Saturday evening.

Dortmund police filed 28 charges for breaches of the law concerning explosives, assault, dangerous bodily injury, damage to property and theft after Leipzig supporters were pelted with stones and cans by Dortmund fans as they approached the stadium. Four police officers and a police dog were injured, the police said in a statement

“Dortmund strongly condemns this violence,” the club said on its website Sunday.

Dortmund police said they were forced to use batons and pepper spray to prevent the situation from escalating.

“All-in-all, extreme aggression and readiness for violence could be established among the Dortmund fans against the visitors. This was directed against any person who could be identified as a Leipzig fan, regardless of whether they were small children, women or families,” the police said.

Dortmund said it was working with police to deal with the incidents, and it wished injured Leipzig fans a speedy recovery.

Dortmund won the game 1-0 thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s first-half header to go third behind Leipzig.

Bundesliga wrap: Bayern, Leipzig both stumble

Leipzig's Oliver Burke, right, and Dortmund's Christian Pulisic challenge for the ball during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig in Dortmund, Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
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The Bundesliga title race could’ve gained a lot of intrigue on Saturday, as Bayern Munich drew at home.

But RB Leipzig blew the chance to pull within one of the leaders, falling to Borussia Dortmund, and the table difference stands at four points after 19 matches.

Along with third-place Dortmund, Hoffenheim, Hertha Berlin, and Koln also won to keep the battle for third and fourth wide open.

Bayern Munich 1-1 Schalke

Schalke put together a strong effort on the day, answering Robert Lewandowski’s ninth minute goal within four minutes. That equalizer from Naldo was enough to have Schalke resembling its better teams of yesteryear, though neither side could find a breakthrough at the Allianz Arena.

Borussia Dortmund 1-0 RB Leipzig

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang made no doubt with a header after Moussa Dembele abused the left side of the RB Leipzig attack. Christian Pulisic subbed on for the final 29 minutes of BVB’s win.

Elsewhere
Hamburg 1-0 Bayer Leverkusen — Bobby Wood goes 90 in W
Hertha Berlin 1-0 Ingolstadt — Haraguchi scores lone goal
Koln 1-0 Wolfsburg — Anthony Modeste nets 15th of season
Borussia Monchengladbach 3-0 Freiburg — Three scorers
Hoffenheim 4-0 Mainz — Adam Szalai bags brace
Augsburg vs. Werder Bremen — 9:30 a.m. EDT Sunday
Eintracht Frankfurt vs. Darmstadt — 11:30 a.m. EDT Sunday

Standings

 

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Bayern Munich 19 14 4 1 43 12 31 7-3-0 7-1-1 46
 RB Leipzig 19 13 3 3 36 17 19 8-1-0 5-2-3 42
 Borussia Dortmund 19 9 7 3 39 21 18 6-3-0 3-4-3 34
 1899 Hoffenheim 19 8 10 1 35 19 16 5-5-0 3-5-1 34
 Hertha BSC Berlin 19 10 3 6 27 21 6 8-0-1 2-3-5 33
 1. FC Köln 19 8 8 3 28 16 12 5-4-0 3-4-3 32
 Eintracht Frankfurt 18 9 5 4 23 15 8 5-3-0 4-2-4 32
 SC Freiburg 19 8 2 9 24 33 -9 6-0-3 2-2-6 26
 Bayer Leverkusen 19 7 3 9 28 29 -1 4-2-4 3-1-5 24
 Mönchengladbach 19 6 5 8 21 27 -6 5-3-2 1-2-6 23
 FC Schalke 04 19 6 4 9 22 21 1 5-1-4 1-3-5 22
 FSV Mainz 05 19 6 4 9 27 35 -8 4-3-2 2-1-7 22
 FC Augsburg 18 5 6 7 15 20 -5 2-3-4 3-3-3 21
 VfL Wolfsburg 19 5 4 10 17 27 -10 2-2-6 3-2-4 19
 Werder Bremen 18 4 4 10 22 38 -16 3-1-6 1-3-4 16
 Hamburger SV 19 4 4 11 16 35 -19 3-2-4 1-2-7 16
 FC Ingolstadt 04 19 4 3 12 17 30 -13 2-2-5 2-1-7 15
 Darmstadt 18 2 3 13 12 36 -24 2-3-5 0-0-8 9

Bundesliga wrap: Leipzig, Bayern win; Alaba scores gorgeous free kick (video)

Bayern's David Alaba, up, celebrates his free kick goal with first scorer Arjen Robben during the German Bundesliga soccer match between Werder Bremen and Bayern Munich in Bremen, Saturday, Jan. 28, 2017. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
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The Bundesliga’s only hopes for a multi-horse title race are Bayern Munich hitting a significant slump or RB Leipzig continuing to consistently win in its first season in the top flight.

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The former doesn’t look likely, and fortunately Leipzig is cooperating.

RB Leipzig 2-1 Hoffenheim

On paper, it was going to be the match of the weekend and in many ways it failed to disappoint. Nadiem Amiri have the visitors the lead after 18 minutes, only for Timo Werner to set it level before the break.

Austrian midfielder Marcel Sabitzer then swung the table gap in favor of Leipzig with a second half goal. A Leipzig loss would’ve pulled Hoffenheim within five points of second place. Sabitzer’s goal makes the gap between Leipzig and their fourth-placed visitors 11 points.

Darmstadt 1-6 Koln

USMNT striker Terrence Boyd’s first match as a Darmstadt striker was memorable but not in a good way. Koln put three goals on each side of Sidney Sam’s 66th minute penalty, battering Darmstadt behind a brace from Japanese strike Yuya Osako.

Werder Bremen 1-2 Bayern Munich

It was 1-1 and Bremen was hopeful of securing a point against the leaders until, well… David Alaba, you do you.

Elsewhere
Schalke 0-1 Eintracht Frankfurt — Friday
Wolfsburg 1-2 Augsburg
Ingolstadt 3-1 Hamburg
Bayer Leverkusen 2-3 Borussia Monchengladbach
Freiburg vs. Hertha Berlin — 9:30 a.m. EDT Sunday
Mainz vs. Borussia Dortmund — 11:30 a.m. EDT Sunday

Standings

 

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Bayern Munich 18 14 3 1 42 11 31 7-2-0 7-1-1 45
 RB Leipzig 18 13 3 2 36 16 20 8-1-0 5-2-2 42
 Eintracht Frankfurt 18 9 5 4 23 15 8 5-3-0 4-2-4 32
 1899 Hoffenheim 18 7 10 1 31 19 12 4-5-0 3-5-1 31
 Borussia Dortmund 17 8 6 3 37 20 17 5-3-0 3-3-3 30
 Hertha BSC Berlin 17 9 3 5 25 19 6 7-0-1 2-3-4 30
 1. FC Köln 18 7 8 3 27 16 11 4-4-0 3-4-3 29
 Bayer Leverkusen 18 7 3 8 28 28 0 4-2-4 3-1-4 24
 SC Freiburg 17 7 2 8 22 29 -7 5-0-3 2-2-5 23
 FC Schalke 04 18 6 3 9 21 20 1 5-1-4 1-2-5 21
 FSV Mainz 05 17 6 3 8 26 30 -4 4-2-2 2-1-6 21
 FC Augsburg 18 5 6 7 15 20 -5 2-3-4 3-3-3 21
 Mönchengladbach 18 5 5 8 18 27 -9 4-3-2 1-2-6 20
 VfL Wolfsburg 18 5 4 9 17 26 -9 2-2-6 3-2-3 19
 Werder Bremen 18 4 4 10 22 38 -16 3-1-6 1-3-4 16
 FC Ingolstadt 04 18 4 3 11 17 29 -12 2-2-5 2-1-6 15
 Hamburger SV 18 3 4 11 15 35 -20 2-2-4 1-2-7 13
 Darmstadt 18 2 3 13 12 36 -24 2-3-5 0-0-8 9