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RB Leipzig vs Union Berlin preview: Die Eisernen aiming to avenge Pokal defeat

By Ben Sully

For the second time in just a matter of days RB Leipzig and Union Berlin will face-off. Their DFB-Pokal semi-final was decided by a late Emil Forsberg winner, and the visitors will be hoping to avoid another defeat to Leipzig on Saturday.
Urs Fischer.
Urs Fischer.

RB Leipzig


Leipzig have enjoyed a successful week. Last weekend they edged out Bayer Leverkusen in an important contest in the race for the top four, and they followed that result with a dramatic 2-1 victory over Union Berlin in the semi-finals of the DFB-Pokal in midweek.


It looked as though Leipzig may miss out on a place in the final, when Sheraldo Becker gave Union a first half lead. However, Die Roten Bullen hit back in the second half thanks to Andre Silva's spot-kick, and just as the tie seemed to be heading towards extra-time, Emil Forsberg found a dramatic winner in the second minute of stoppage time.

In his short period as Leipzig boss, Domenico Tedesco has guided his side to a cup final, while they are also involved in the semi-finals of the Europa League with the first leg of their tie against West Ham United set to take place on Thursday.

Although they have an important European fixture coming up, Leipzig must remain focused on domestic affairs, as they bid to qualify for next season's Champions League. With four games left to play, Die Roten Bullen are three points clear of their fellow Pokal finalists Freiburg, who currently sit in fifth position.
Team News

The hosts are unable to call upon the services of Amadou Haidara, who is out with a knee injury, while Lukas Klostermann is a doubt for Saturday's contest.

Union Berlin


Union enter Saturday's encounter with one thing on their mind, and that is to avenge the midweek cup defeat.

Although they will be in a downbeat mood following that loss, Union can still be proud of a successful season that still has a lot riding on it.

With five points separating them from the top four, a Champions League place seems to be an unrealistic dream, but Union's main goal for the rest of the campaign will be to keep hold of sixth position.


Although seventh place is expected to become a European spot, Union will know that they cannot afford to rest on their laurels with FC Köln and Hoffenheim hot on their heels.

The visitors do enter Saturday's encounter in imperious league form after winning their last three Bundesliga matches.

Their away form, however, has room for improvement, with their last five away league games resulting in four victories, although they did win their most recent away outing in the Bundesliga. A 4-1 win over their rivals Hertha BSC represented Union's first league win on their travels since January.
Team News

Timo Baumgartl will drop out of the Union lineup as he serves a one-match suspension for an accumulation of yellow cards, which could result in Dominique Heintz being presented with a starting berth. Urs Fischer has confirmed that goalkeeper Andreas Luthe is available, although Frederik Rønnow is set to keep his place between the posts.


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